Best in Texas

San Antonio outshines Austin on Travel + Leisure's list of top cities for 2018

San Antonio outshines Austin on Travel + Leisure's top cities 2018

The Emily Morgan Hotel and the Alamo san antonio
San Antonio shines among the country's best cities.  Photo courtesy of The Emily Morgan Hotel

America's longtime love affair with San Antonio continues to heat up. On July 10, stalwart travel magazine Travel + Leisure released its World's Best Issue, an annual survey of the finest hotels, destinations, resorts, and, of course, cities.

This year, Travel + Leisure's Top 15 Cities in the United States was selected by readers, who chose San Antonio as the No. 7 best city in the country. Garnering an overall ranking of 81.62, Alamo City comes in ahead of Austin at No. 13, the only other Texas city to make the list. 

"But despite their striking contrasts, the American cities beloved by T+L readers share a similar spirit," said the magazine's editor. "They seduce us with their charisma and friendliness. They endeavor to preserve their rich histories. They offer restful green spaces, a wealth of cultural institutions, and innovative restaurants that aim to satisfy the most adventurous palates."

And with its 300-year-old history — making it one of the oldest cities in the nation — dedication to art and public spaces, and culinary scene, San Antonio is indeed seductive. 

In order to determine the world's best, T+L conducted an audience survey from November 6, 2017 to March 5, 2018. Respondents were asked to rate sights/landmarks, culture, food, friendliness, shopping, and value for each city using a score of excellent, above average, average, below average, or poor. The ratings were then combined within a fraction of a point to determine the winners. 

Coming in at No. 1 was Charleston, South Carolina, the "crown jewel of the South Carolina coast." New Orleans came in at No. 2 followed by Savannah, Georgia, at No. 3. Santa Fe and New York City round out the top five.

In total, eight charming Southern cities made the top 15 including Asheville, North Carolina, (8); Nashville (9); and Williamsburg, Virginia, (12).