South Lake Tahoe is 4th place in America's Destinations 'On the Rise'

by Placerville Newswire / Feb 14, 2016 / comments

New York City may be the most popular place to visit in America, but the country has many small towns that are worth exploring, too. Here are the 2016 “Destinations on the Rise,” chosen by the travel website TripAdvisor.

The expression ‘on the rise’ means that something is becoming better and more popular. The list includes the 10 destinations that saw the largest increase in positive TripAdvisor traveler reviews in the past year.

Most of the cities on the list are small, with less than 20,000 people. Four of the destinations -- including the number-one pick -- are next to some of America’s most famous national parks.

The Great Smoky Mountains rise in the background about 20 miles away from this Knoxville, Tenn., neighborhood on Thursday, March 10, 2005.

The Great Smoky Mountains rise in the background about 20 miles away from this Knoxville, Tenn., neighborhood on Thursday, March 10, 2005.

 

1. Gatlinburg, Tennessee:

Number one on the list is Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Gatlinburg, Tennessee, isbest known as the gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park,America’s most-visited national park. Gatlinburg offers hiking, fishing, andhorseback riding in all seasons. Visitors can ride up to the top of the 100-meter Gatlinburg Space Needle for views of the Smoky Mountains. The area’sscenery attracts painters, photographers and other artists.

 

In this Sunday, Aug. 1, 2010, photo, Tracy Burgess of Cullman, Ala. sits on the beach in Orange Beach, Ala.

In this Sunday, Aug. 1, 2010, photo, Tracy Burgess of Cullman, Ala. sits on the beach in Orange Beach, Ala.

 

 

 

 

2. Orange Beach, Alabama

Number two on the list is Orange Beach, Alabama. Orange Beach sits alongthe Gulf of Mexico. It is a popular place for travelers looking for rest and calmon the white sand beaches. Orange Beach serves up excellent Gulf Coastseafood, like fried oysters and seafood gumbo. It is known as an excellentlocation for deep-sea fishing.

 

The beach in Destin, Florida. Photo courtesy of Anzhela Rudenko.

The beach in Destin, Florida. Photo courtesy of Anzhela Rudenko.

3. Destin, Florida

Just two hours east of Orange Beach is Destin, Florida, the third pick on thelist. The beach town calls itself the “world’s luckiest fishing village.” It is hometo several kilometers of white sand beaches along Florida’s Gulf Coast. Thetown of 12,000 people welcomes more than 4 million visitors a year. Destineven holds a yearly “Fishing Rodeo.

 

With Lake Tahoe as a backdrop, a skier kicks up some powder at Heavenly Ski Resort, Wednesday, April 14, 2010 in South Lake Tahoe, Calif

With Lake Tahoe as a backdrop, a skier kicks up some powder at Heavenly Ski Resort, Wednesday, April 14, 2010 in South Lake Tahoe, Calif

 

4. South Lake Tahoe, California

Number four is South Lake Tahoe, California. Lake Tahoe is the largest alpinelake in North America. Tahoe is along the California-Nevada border. The area offers outdoor adventures and beautiful views. One way to enjoy the mountains and lake view is on the 5-kilometer ride up in the Heavenly Mountain Gondola. In the winter, the gondola takes you up to Tahoe’s famous ski areas. In summer, the same area offers hiking opportunities.

 

One of the most beautiful national park views, seen by fewer visitors this year, is of the Teton Range from the flat valley in Grand Teton National Park.

One of the most beautiful national park views, seen by fewer visitors this year, is of the Teton Range from the flat valley in Grand Teton National Park.

5. Jackson, Wyoming

Next on the list is #5 - Jackson, Wyoming. Jackson is in the valley of JacksonHole, Wyoming, and just six kilometers from Grand Teton National Park.Jackson is also close to Yellowstone, the world’s first national park. LikeTahoe, people come to Jackson Hole in the winter to ski. The spring andsummer offer hiking and plenty of chances to see wildflowers and wildlife, from elk to bison to black bears. The Grand Teton Music Festival bringsclassical music to the mountains every summer. Summer visitors can also go to a rodeo to experience the Old West.

 

This July 19, 2014 photo shows Alberta Falls in the Bear Lake Corridor Trails area in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado.

This July 19, 2014 photo shows Alberta Falls in the Bear Lake Corridor Trails area in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado.

 

6. Estes Park, Colorado

Our sixth destination is Estes Park, Colorado. Estes Park sits 2,300 metersabove sea level in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. The area is a paradisefor nature lovers. Estes Park’s main street is lined with art galleries andshops. The city is the gateway to the Rocky Mountain National Park, whichprovides visitors with scenic drives, rock climbing, and world-class hiking.

 

Musher Wade Marrs of Wasillal, Alaska, leads his team Saturday, March 7, 2015, during the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Anchorage, Alaska.

Musher Wade Marrs of Wasillal, Alaska, leads his team Saturday, March 7, 2015, during the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Anchorage, Alaska.

 

7. Anchorage, Alaska

Number seven is Anchorage, Alaska. Anchorage is Alaska’s biggest city. It islocated near several of the state’s eight national parks, including the KenaiFjords National Park, known for its glaciers and wildlife. Anchorage marks thestart of the famous Iditarod dog sled race, which takes place every year inMarch. Anchorage is also home to the Alaska Native Heritage Center, wherevisitors can learn about Alaska’s native people.

 

The Roberto Clement Bridge is seen spanning the Allegheny River near downtown Pittsburgh, September 22, 2009. The G20 summit will be held in Pittsburgh September 24 and 25. REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES POLITICS BUSINESS) - RTR285PO

The Roberto Clement Bridge is seen spanning the Allegheny River near downtown Pittsburgh, September 22, 2009. The G20 summit will be held in Pittsburgh September 24 and 25. REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES POLITICS BUSINESS) - RTR285PO

 

8. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh is known as the Steel City. It is home to more than 400 bridges and 300 steel-related businesses. Pittsburgh is also often called “America’s BestSports City” because of its many professional sports teams. The city has 90neighborhoods, which represent the diverse history of Pittsburgh. In 2004, the Pittsburgh neighborhood of Central Northside started providing international writers in exile a place to live through a program called City ofAsylum.

 

A couple pauses to take in the view of a colorful sunset while walking their dog in a park, Thursday, Jan. 28, 2016, in Portland, Maine.

A couple pauses to take in the view of a colorful sunset while walking their dog in a park, Thursday, Jan. 28, 2016, in Portland, Maine.

 

9. Portland, Maine

Portland, Maine is #9 on the list. Portland is on southern Maine’s rocky coast.Portland’s city motto is, “Yes. Life’s good here.” The city is famous for its food,art, and nature. Visitors come to eat Maine lobster at one of Portland’sdowntown restaurants. Nearby are many beaches, walking trails, and placesto go boating or fishing.

 

Snow on Mauna Kea is seen Friday Jan. 31, 2014, behind a statue of the Hawaiian King Kamehameha in Hilo, Hawaii.

Snow on Mauna Kea is seen Friday Jan. 31, 2014, behind a statue of the Hawaiian King Kamehameha in Hilo, Hawaii.

 

10. Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

Our 10th and final destination 'on the rise' is Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. The BigIsland of Hawaii has eight of the world’s 13 climate zones. The historic fishingvillage of Kailua-Kona is on the western, “dry side” of the Big Island. The areagrows some of the most prized coffee beans in the world, Kona coffee. FromKailua-Kona, visitors can explore the Mauna Kea volcano. The 4,200-metertop is home to the world’s largest observatory for astronomy. The researchcenter has high-powered telescopes that visitors can use to explore the nightsky.