In Boise it’s all about the Greenbelt. The 26-mile parkway lining the Boise River and bisecting downtown is the city’s lifeblood, providing access to more than 20 parks, multiple biking and hiking trails, pedestrian bridges, and an outdoor amphitheater.
Residents can ski at Sugar Bowl (45 minutes away), mountain-bike 120 miles of singletrack within a 20-minute drive into Tahoe National Forest, and visit five vineyards less than 30 minutes from downtown.
The Best River Towns in America: Nevada City, California
Fort Collins stands above the rest thanks to its backcountry terrain (like 10,276-foot Cameron Pass), its prime location on the brown-trout-filled Cache La Poudre River, the great biking scene, and, of course, the microbrew-dominated economy.
People come to the Mad River Valley as much for what it lacks—traffic, noise, pretention—as for what it offers: the Green Mountains out the back door, the Class II–III Mad River, and the great local food that comes with living in a historic farm town.
Honolulu might act like a city, but there aren't many places on earth where you can paddle into head-high roller at dawn, ride a beach cruiser to work, and be staring into a 300,000-year-old volcanic crater by dusk.