When we list off all the places in the world we want to see, we often overlook the hidden gems in our own backyard. It turns out there are some amazing destinations close to home, like these 10 incredible vacation spots:
1. Dahlonega, Georgia
Seeing pictures of this Gold Rush town puts Georgia on our mind, with the town's incredibly preserved buildings from the 1800s. The town is also in the center of Georgia's blooming wine industry, which is probably why it's often listed as one of the best places to retire in America.
2. Saint Augustine, Florida
This "city" of just 14,000 people was America's first, founded by Spanish settler in 1565. The architecture demonstrates the city's history, especially the famous Castillo de San Marcos fortress, which still has a working drawbridge and cannons on the walls.
3. Madison, Georgia
More than 100 historic pre-Civil War buildings are perfectly preserved in this town, and you can enjoy the sights on bike or foot before doing some antique shopping at the city center. Be sure to stop by Heritage Hall, especially when it's decorated at Christmastime.
4. Taos, New Mexico
People have lived in Taos' historic clay Pueblos just north of town for almost 1,000 years, and the Puebloan people still call it their home today. The beautiful sights around Taos, including the Sangre de Christo mountains, have inspired artists from across the country.
5. Carmel-By-The-Sea, California
Clint Eastwood was once the mayor of this quiet cottage town on the California coast, which is famous for its wacky laws. There are antique shops, beaches, museums and hiking trails all within walking distance, but leave your high heels at home - you need a permit to wear them in town.
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6. Seward, Alaska
Every town in Alaska has beautiful views of the local scenery, but Seward is the best of them all. It's smack dab between the Kenai Mountains and Ressurection Bay, so you get the best of both world. Plus, Seward is world famous for its gorgeous hand-painted murals.
7. Nantucket, Massachusetts
This sleepy island of 10,000 people swells to 50,000 during tourist season, and once you've visited it's easy to see why. You can enjoy the sun and sand or visit the bookshops along the cobblestone streets of the town's historic district. Be sure to check the world-famous cottages, because each one has a creative name.
8. Galena, Illinois
Things move a little slower outside the big city, and this town just a few hours north of Chicago looks like it's still in the 1800s. The old red brick factories and office buildings on Main Street have been turned into trendy restaurants and art galleries. Plus, you can walk down to the Mississippi river to cool your feet.
9. Leavenworth, Washington
To attract visitors in the 1960s, this town remodeled itself to look like a Bavarian village. Along with lots of events that fit the theme - like a huge Oktoberfest celebration - the town has a beautiful Christmas display, including the world's largest nutcracker museum.
10. Port Townsend, Washington
There's something for everyone here with historic Victorian buildings, beautiful foliage and lots of places to grab dinner and a drink by the waterfront. Along with a drive-in theater that opens in the summer, you can enjoy jazz and blues concerts year-round.
Which one of these towns are you dying to visit? Share this list and let us know!