The 10 Healthiest Cities in the U.S.
To find the healthiest cities in the U.S., Trulia ranked 100 of the largest metropolitan areas in the country across ten key factors. Did your city make the list?
So how is your 2019 resolution to eat healthier or exercise more going? If you haven’t been keeping up with well-intentioned promises to yourself, it might have something to do with where you live. For people with better access to healthy food, recreation centers, bike paths, community support and more, getting into shape this year will be a whole lot easier.
To find the healthiest cities in the U.S., real estate site Trulia ranked 100 of the largest metropolitan areas in the country across 10 key factors — everything from the percentage of adults who report biking or walking to work to the percentage of adults who exercise regularly. Find out if your city landed on Trulia’s fit list.
10. San Francisco, California
San Francisco’s “expansive park space, hilly topography and ample coastline” make it ideal for people to exercise every day, Trulia reports. With its abundance of scenic bike paths, it has the highest percentage of residents who bike or walk to work: 9 percent. What’s more, San Francisco residents have easy access to healthy food, with 77 stores per 100,000 residents. The city also boasts several gorgeous urban hiking trails, including Golden Gate Park and Land’s End, and neighbors other great outdoor destinations like Mount Tamalpais, Mount Diablo, Angel Island and Port Reyes National Seashore.
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9. San Diego, California
San Diegans enjoy awesome weather all year round. The average annual temperature is 70 degrees, making their home a giant playground for outdoor sports. Residents can enjoy water activities like surfing, paddleboarding and kayaking along the city’s 70 miles of coastline, or go inland toward Anza-Borrego Desert State Park for mountain biking, rock climbing, horseback riding and more. San Diego ranked 10th in exercise on Trulia’s list, with 83 percent of residents saying that they work out regularly.
8. Boston, Massachusetts
With powerhouse professional sports teams like the Celtics, Red Sox and Patriots in their backyard, it’s safe to say that Bostonians love some friendly competition. And they’re not afraid to get dirty: According to Trulia, they have the third highest amount of league clubs in the nation. Another thing that apparently doesn’t bother Boston natives? Chilly weather. Boston has the second highest percentage of residents who bike to work, despite the bitter cold that sometimes plagues the city.
7. Cambridge, Massachusetts
To find out which city beat out Boston to win the seventh spot on Trulia’s list, just cross the Charles River. Home to some of the nation’s most prestigious academic institutions, including Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge also boasts the second highest number of gyms. And among the city’s many active students and professionals you’ll find a robust community of cycling enthusiasts. “It’s no wonder the city has an official bicycle committee," Trulia experts write, noting that it was awarded honorable mention for best biking city by Bicycling magazine. Lastly, Cambridge ranked fifth in the nation for sports instruction (think: tennis lessons) — the highest of any city that made Trulia’s top 10.
6. Charleston, South Carolina
Located on the coast of South Carolina, Charleston offers easy access to water sports like kayaking and sailing. Its extensive network of canals and waterways makes it the perfect home for a burgeoning paddleboarding community. Inland, Charleston residents can enjoy outdoor facilities like equestrian centers, world-class golf courses and plenty of bike lanes almost year round due to the city’s mild, subtropical climate. During the summertime, when the weather is best, the Hampton Park Terrace neighborhood closes its roadways to traffic, allowing its residents to use the streets for outdoor activities. And in the winter, when it’s a little too wet to go outside, know that the city is ranked third in number of gyms per household. But if you’re looking for something a little more organized, Charleston has you covered: It ranked second in the nation for its number of leagues, teams and sports clubs.
5. Fort Lauderdale, Florida
If you prefer to get fit in the great outdoors, Fort Lauderdale might be the place for you. It ranked first for having the most park space, with 37 percent of its public land dedicated to green space for the community to enjoy. “Kayakers and paddleboarders enjoy the serenity of the coastal waters, golfers try their best at more than 40 courses throughout the city, and cyclists zip along scenic bicycle routes like the Hollywood Boardwalk and Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard,” Trulia reports. And because the city ranks 17th in sports instruction, locals have every opportunity to learn something new. To get out of the city, residents can escape to the Everglades, home to rare animal species like the manatee and Florida panther.
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4. Seattle, Washington
Located on the Puget Sound in the Pacific Northwest, Seattle is surrounded by beautiful coastline, lush forestry and picturesque mountains. It’s no wonder that its residents enjoy the outdoors: The city ranked ninth in Trulia’s bike-to-work category. On their days off, cyclists can also cruise along the 27-mile Burke-Gilman Trail, which winds throughout the city. Those who prefer to hike have access to an abundance of trails in Seattle’s Discovery Park and nearby Mount Si and Mount Rainier. For a taste of the city’s urban farming initiatives, head over the the Beacon Hill neighborhood, where residents tend a seven-acre community food garden. And if you’re looking to get in shape, Seattle ranked sixth for diet and weight-loss centers, so there’s no shortage of support available.
3. Orange County, California
With 42 miles of sun-soaked coastline and acres of vast wilderness at their fingertips, Orange County residents don’t waste their time being idle. The city ranked third out of 100 in the parkland category, with another 14 percent of its public land dedicated to green space and landmarks. According to Trulia, 85 percent of residents report that they’ve exercised in the past month, whether that meant surfing at Laguna Beach, standup paddleboarding in Newport Harbor or even hiking in Peters Canyon Regional Park or Crystal Cove State Park.
2. West Palm Beach, Florida
On the nation’s opposite coast, you’ll find West Palm Beach, which shares many of Orange County’s best qualities. Moderate, sunny weather makes this city the perfect place to enjoy hiking in Okeeheelee Park, golfing at one of more than 160 courses and touring nearby neighborhoods like Wellington, “known for its horseback riding and polo fields,” Trulia experts report. Over 15 percent of public land in West Palm Beach is dedicated to green space, beaches and landmarks, earning the city its second-place spot in the park space category. And aspiring dancers will be interested to read that West Palm Beach comes in second for most recreational dance companies in the United States.
1. Salt Lake City, Utah
If you’re not from Salt Lake City, you might be surprised to hear that Trulia named it the healthiest city in America. This is thanks in huge part to Salt Lake City being a mecca for outdoor sports. It has the most sports teams and leagues in the nation and the most sporting goods stores per household. Not to mention it’s home to Olympic Park, which, if you’re not caught up on Americana, was home to the 2002 Winter Games and now serves as a training facility for athletes. Plus, Salt Lake City’s natural landscape has a lot to offer fitness junkies and outdoor enthusiasts. “Locals love to hike, bike and snowboard in the nearby Wasatch Mountains, which are teeming with valley trails and ski resorts,” Trulia reports. The city also offers year-round river rafting, and tourists are encouraged to visit Sugar House Park, which boasts 110 acres of rolling hills, lakes and pathways. With 82 percent of residents reporting that they’ve exercised in the past month, it’s no mystery that Salt Lake City is the nation’s best place to live for health and wellness.
What Do YOU Think?
Do you live in any of the nation’s 10 healthiest cities? How does your city impact your health and fitness for the better or worse? Would you consider moving to a place for better access to things like recreational facilities and grocery stores? Leave us a comment below!