Port Townsend one of America's best small towns

Port Townsend one of America's best small towns

Bourbon is the star of Bardstown, in the center of Kentucky. The trademarked "bourbon capital of the world," the city is home to the annual Kentucky Bourbon Festival and a public museum fully dedicated to whiskey. And while you enjoy the drinks, travel to the Civil War Museum at Old Bardstown Village and the plantation mansion of Judge John and Ann Rowan. Rumor is that place inspired his cousin, Stephen Foster, to write the fabled tune "My Old Kentucky Home."

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by Astead Herndon

KING5.com

Posted on June 13, 2014 at 7:48 AM

(CNN) -- With their quaint downtowns, undeniably charming shops and distinct personalities, small towns have long held a special place in the American heart.

That homey feel can also appeal to city travelers longing for a slice of small town Americana.

The best of the best are included in Fodor's Travel second-annual list of "America's Best Small Towns," released Thursday. From a funky arts town in Oregon to a popular South Carolina throwback, there is nothing small about the affordable attractions these cities offer.

"There has been a big uprise in traveling to smaller towns that have some quirky and regional appeal," said Arabella Bowen, executive editorial director of Fodor's Travel. "There is a want for a local, authentic, mom-and-pop experience."

To qualify for the Fodor's list, these small towns must have fewer than 30,000 residents, although the majority have under 10,000 residents. The cities also must be able to accommodate short, weekend stays.

"There is a lot of surprising delight in these places," Bowen said.

So whether it's a wedding anniversary or a family vacation on a budget, wave goodbye to big city blues and hello to tiny town delight. Click on our gallery to see Fodor's top 10 choices.

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