Providence, Rhode Island
This little city is experiencing a big renaissance in terms of art, culture, and food in its downtown areas and surrounding neighborhoods.
Here’s the cool thing about Providence: It’s easily accessible from other East Coast cities, only 50 miles from Boston, and 180 miles from New York. And once you get there (by car or by Amtrak), you’ve got all the options of a city without the crowds, the prices, or the parking hassles.
In the past couple of years alone, 35 new businesses have opened their doors downtown. That doesn’t even include the surrounding neighborhoods, where you’ll find a wide variety of ethnic dining, bohemian coffee shops and a growing number of farm-to-table restaurants.
Come summer, don’t miss the city’s iconic event, Waterfire, an outdoor event featuring braziers of wood burning in the middle of the river.