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21 Towns Like Galena, IL

Check out our compiled list of the best towns similar to Galena, Illinois. Each town offers a unique experience where you get to enjoy lavish cuisine and adventurous excursions.

Historical town main street in Galena, Illinois.

Every town across the United States has something unique about them. If it’s rich in history or offers a promising future, no two towns are exactly the same. However, many towns across the States share some qualities. If it’s scenic attractions, a buzzing downtown vibe, or a good list of outdoor activities that will keep you occupied throughout the year.

Nestled on the Galena River, Galena, Illinois, is the perfect winter wonderland for a couple’s getaway or a family who wants the snowy Christmas experience. The town has a reasonable cost of living, with the median income being $45 800 and housing costing an estimated $201 700.

In Illinois’s Jo Daviess County is the small town of Galena, which can be found along the Galena River – a tributary of the Mississippi River. This town of 3 300 residents prides itself on offering tourists a unique experience, from lavish cuisine to adventurous excursions in the snow. Similar towns include Branson, Skaneateles, and Gatlinburg.

These towns in the United States each have distinct personalities. Still, they each share some commonalities and similar offerings as Galena. Museums that carry great region histories to holiday resorts offer a lifetime experience for people of all ages in these places. Let’s check out 21 towns that are similar to Galena, Illinois.

Arthur, Illinois

Young Hall and Reid Hall at Lake Forest College in Arthur, Illinois.

Arthur, Illinois, is a humble little town that is also the home to the state’s oldest and largest Amish community. You can enjoy local bluegrass music at the Penn Station Theatre or enjoy a walk alongside the beautiful Lake Shelbyville.

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It has a notably low unemployment rate, with the median income at $53 000, and the average house is priced at $127 000. Arthur describes itself as an Amish-friendly community, with over 4,000 members of the community living in the town.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Arther, Illinois, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Branson, Missouri

Stone church against the lake in Branson, Missouri.

Branson, Missouri, is a little town in the Ozark Mountains with world-class live entertainment, thrilling activities, and magnificent scenery. When you step into the town and experience the activities and embrace the beautiful surroundings, you will consider making the holiday destination a permanent resident.

Branson’s population is about three times that of Gatlinburg, and it’s on the rise, with a current population of 11 870 people. The unemployment rate in this area is higher than the national average. Despite this, the typical household income remains unchanged at $38,250, with residences costing an average of $173,000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Branson, Missouri, click here for the town’s official website.

Chatham, Massachusetts

Harwich garden park in Chatham, Massachusetts.

On the Atlantic Ocean is the quaint seaside town Chatham, Massachusetts, found on the southeastern edge of the Cape Cod coastline. Chatham has one of the highest costs of livings found on this list. The median income is $63 300, and the average house costs residents a steep $900 800.

There are endless beaches to have fun in the sun throughout the year, especially the iconic Lighthouse Beach next to the Chatham Lighthouse dating back to the 19th Century. Chatham also has a super fascinating Railway Museum with artifacts that date back to the late 1880s. With a modest population of 5 900, Chatham is known for its lovely weather, making it a vibrant holiday destination.

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To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Chatham, Massachusetts, click here for the town’s unofficial tourism website.

Cody, Wyoming

Historic western buildings in Cody, Wyoming.

Cody, Wyoming, is a well-known little town near one of the eastern gates to Yellowstone National Park. It has a cowboy essence about it, with the intriguing Buffalo Bill Center of the West. You can even put on your cowboy boots and get your denim dirty at the local Stampede Rodeo.

Cody’s population of around 9 900 people has been growing at a reasonable pace. The typical wage in this Republican town, which has incredible vistas and rich history, is $53 6000, with a housing market average of $331 500.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Cody, Wyoming, click here for the town’s official website.

Frankenmuth, Michigan

Bavarian-style architecture in Frankenmuth, Michigan.

On the eastern side of Michigan lies the innocent little town called Frankenmuth with the beautiful Cass River stream passing through. There is plenty to do in Frankenmuth, also known as Michigan’s Little Bavaria, especially with its fantastic and comfortable weather throughout the summer. When it comes to Wintertime, Frankenmuth turns up the heat with the Worlds Largest Christmas Store at the Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland.

Frankenmuth has had a steady population of around 5 700 people with a favorable cost of living just below the national average. The median salary in this hip little town is $46 200, with the average house priced at $275 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Frankenmuth, Michigan, click here for the town’s official website.

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Fulton, Illinois

The De Immigrant Windmill on the historic Lincoln Highway in Fulton, Illinois.

Fulton is weird and wonderful, with hot summers and warm winters. You’ll be welcomed with a giant windmill that was brought over by the Dutch quite a few years back. If you want to cool off, you can always take a boat and a fishing rod and enjoy the beautiful Mississippi River.

The town is filled with well-maintained historical buildings, like the post office that has been operational in the same building since 1838. With an unemployment rate below the nation’s average, Fulton has a median income of $54 700 and the average house costing $127 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Fulton, Illinois, click here for the town’s official website.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Old Mill at sunrise in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee, is a small resort town found at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park base. This small town, like Galena, is a small town that offers a big vacation for families or couple getaways. Gatlinburg is ideal for family vacations because it is right on the doorstep of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Gatlinburg’s population has been on a steady climb. It is currently on 3 800 with an unemployment rate a bit below the national average. With North Americans claiming this town as a hidden gem, the median income for the residents is $35 400 per annum, with the housing market reaching a  median of $385 300.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Leavenworth, Washington

Town in Leavenworth, Washington adorned with holiday lighting during winter.

Leavenworth, Washington, is a town of roughly 2 300 residents and has an incredible fairytale sort of vibe about it. This Bavarian-inspired town is surrounded by the majestic Cascade Mountains that surround the town and achieves excellent weather year-out. This isn’t to say that the Winters aren’t cold. In fact, Leavenworth is amongst the most desirable towns, like Galena, for that Christmas spirit during the festive seasons.

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This town is the perfect getaway if you wish to get some peace and quiet away from the buzzing inner city. When you need a cold drink or some warm Gluwhein, you can always go downtown to one of the plenty of bars on the strip. The town’s cost of living is above the nation’s average, with the median income at $37 400 and the average house costing $625 400.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Leavenworth, Washington, click here for the town’s official website.

Lochsloy, Washington

Nestled between Lake Stevens and Granite Falls, like the quaint little town Lochsloy, Washington. The town offers a tranquil holiday experience with great scenic walks, especially to the waterfall.

Even though Lochsloy only has a population estimated at around 3 500, it has seen massive growth over the past few years. The town has managed to maintain an unemployment level below the nation’s average. However, the cost of living in Lochsley is slightly above the country’s average, with the median income being $ 75 500 and the average house costs $591 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Lochsloy, Washington, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Lebanon, Illinois

McKendree University entrance with  brick walls and fountain.

Lebanon is a little town with a long history, only less than half an hour’s drive south of St. Louis. It is home to Illinois’s oldest college, McKendree College, with a fascinatingly diverse range of historical buildings on nearly every corner. Enjoy Lebanon’s fantastic weather with afternoon strolls in Horner Park or enjoy a show at the local Looking Glass Playhouse theatre.

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The town of 4 300 people prides itself on its cultural richness and educated population. It offers comfortable weather throughout the year and a reasonable cost of living. The median income of Lebanon is $51 300 per annum, with the average house priced at $137 300.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Lebanon, Illinois, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Mystic, Connecticut

Lighthouse in Mystic, Connecticut during summertime.

Mystic, Connecticut, is an attractive little town on the banks of the Mystic River. Mystic is one of those places that the locals pride themselves over. It has pretty incredible scenic surroundings with a history rich rooting back to the Mystic Seaport as it hosts one of the largest maritime museums in the country. Walking the streets of Mystic will make you feel like you’re going back in time.

The towns’ population has been gaining momentum and attraction over the past few years, as it currently sits at 4 200 residents. The towns’ location is also rather convenient for interstate travelers and permanent residents. The current median income in Mystic is $79 100 with the average house priced at $485 600.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Mystic, Connecticut, click here for the town’s official website.

Nauvoo, Illinois

Latter-Day Saint Temple at dusk in Nauvoo, Illinois.

Nauvoo, Illinois, is a charming little town with a history intertwined with Mormonism. Nestled in Hancock County, Nauvoo is on the banks of the Mississippi River. It has a humble nature, with most of the activities in the town free of charge. You can go enjoy

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It has seen massive growth in population, currently sitting at 1 050 residents but maintaining the cost of living below the nation’s average. The average house costs $108 200 and has a median income of $41 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Nauvoo, Illinois, click here for the town’s official website.

Princeton, Illinois

Old covered bridge in Princeton, Illinois.

Princeton, Illinois, is a step into the past with well-preserved covered bridges and buildings in the main street. Just two hours from Chicago, Princeton has a lot to offer, especially for those who enjoy outdoor activities, particularly gold. The town has over 200 acres of parks, a historic center and shows the world how to properly host seasonal festivals.

This charming town has a steady population estimated at 7 400 people with lovely warm winters and hot winters. Princeton residents earn a median income of $42 200, with the average house costing $ 117 000. 

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Princeton, Illinois, click here for the town’s official website.

Rockton, Illinois

Rock Cut State Park in Illinois.

Rockton, Illinois, nestled in the Rock River Valley, has such good vibes, with amazing breweries and a mouth-watering Dairy Haus. With a steady population of 7 500, the town is ideally located near Chicago.

It has a wonderful small-town atmosphere about it, making it a buzzing tourism destination. The cost of living in Rockton is also really reasonable. The average house is priced at $206 000 and the median salary of $73 300.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Rockton, Illinois, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

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Santa Claus, Indiana

Runners with Santa Claus in Santa Claus, Indiana.

Santa Claus, Indiana, is a little town on the banks of the Ohio River across Interstate 64. As the name suggests, Santa Claus is a holiday destination for the Christmas season. It is often referred to as “Santa’s Home Town.” You can imagine the kind of fun families have during the festive season in this town.

The population of this cute town has been on a steady climb, currently sitting at 2 500, and has maintained an unemployment rate well below the nation’s average. This humble little town has the cost of living slightly above the nation’s average. The average house costs $207 000, and the median income is $71 300 per annum.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Santa Claus, Indiana, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Saugatuck, Michigan

Kalamazoo river running through Saugatuck, Michigan.

Just two hours away from Chicago and you can feel like you’ve escaped to another world, called Saugatuck. You’ll be welcomed with rolling vineyards, pumping beer gardens, and a humble little café in just five minutes.

Saugatuck is one of the smaller towns on this list but has seen promising growth and is currently sitting at an estimated 1000 people. The average house costs $433 900 with a median income of $57 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Saugatuck, Michigan, Florida, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Skaneateles, New York

Shotwell Memorial Park overlooking the Skaneateles Lake.

Skaneateles, New York, is a lively little town on the beautiful Finger Lake. Skaneateles is a popular destination for families who are looking for that North American Christmas experience. For instance, you can see the big hearts of those partaking in the World’s Smallest Christmas Parade Ever.

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Not only is the town an ideal vacation destination, but its great college amenities and its convenient location make it a desirable town to live in. Skaneateles has had a steady population of 7 200 over a couple of years. With the cost of living just above the nation’s average, the median income is $86 800, with the average house priced at $455 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Skaneateles, New York, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Solvang, California

Danish village in Solvang, California.

Solvang, California, is one of those interesting gems of a town in North America. Nestled on the coastline, Solvang looks like a tiny little piece of Denmark was brought over and placed in California and was called Solvang. The town has seen a steady climb in population over the last few years, as it’s currently estimated to 5 600 residents.

Solvang has pleasant weather all year round that carries a thick and upbeat atmosphere about it. They offer a one-of-a-kind Christmas holiday worthy of exploring. The cost of living in such a luxurious part of the world comes at a price. The average household costs $991 300, with the local residents generating a median of $66 500 per annum.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Solvang, California, click here for the town’s official website.

Taos, New Mexico

Historic Taos Pueblo in New Mexico.

Taos is a vibrant and culturally booming town deep in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of New Mexico. Taos is known for its natural beauty, intriguing history, and the Taos Pueblo, a multi-story adobe dwelling part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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The town’s unemployment rate remains an issue, despite its distinctive qualities attracting thousands of tourists each year. However, because of its particular advantage, the cost of living is higher than the national average, with a median salary of $32 100 and an average property costing $334 400.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Taos, New Mexico, click here for the town’s official website.

Vernal, Utah

Dinosaur National Monument in Vernal, Utah.

In the northeastern region of Utah, approximately 176 miles from Salt Lake City, lies the Vernal. On the banks of the Uinta Mountains, Vernal is one of the larger towns on this list but shares that same feeling with Galena, where it sells big dreams from a small, cozy town. You can enjoy going back in time to Dinasourland to see the wonderfully restored fossils of dinosaurs.

In recent years, Vernal has grown considerably, and it presently has a population of 10 500 people. Regardless of the significant influx of new residents, Vernal has maintained an unemployment rate and cost of living below the nation’s average. The median income for residents is $55 000, with the average house priced at $202 500.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Vernal, Utah, click here for the town’s unofficial website.

Woodstock, Vermont

Autumn rural scene in Woodstock, Vermont.

Woodstock, Vermont, is a beautiful town that every family ought to visit. Woodstock comes to life during the festive winter seasons with stunning sleigh rides and old New England architecture that encapsulate Christmas feelings. The cherry on top for Woodstock is that their summers are as pleasant and favored as the cozy winter evenings.

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Woodstock has a notably low unemployment rate, nearly half the nation’s average, and the cost of living slightly above the country’s average. The median income for America’s Prettiest Town residents is $76 700, with the average house priced at $489 000.

To discover more about the different activities and places to visit in Woodstock, Vermont, click here for the town’s official website.

References:

Beautiful Nauvoo

BestPlaces

Cape Cod Museum Trail

City of Fulton: ATTRACTIONS

Explore Branson

Leavenworth Washington

Lebanon Illinois

Explore Gatlinburg

Illinois Amish Country: Area Attractions in and around Arthur…

City Of Princeton, IL: Visitor Information

RoadsideThoughts: Lochsloy, Washington

The Village of Rockton: Regional Links

Santa Claus, Indiana

Visit Saugatuck Michigan

Skaneateles

Solvang, California

Taos, New Mexico

This is Mystic, CT

The Cody: Things To Do in Cody Wy

Travel Channel: 10 Great Small Towns for Big Vacations

Trips To Discover: 11 Best Small Towns to Visit for Christmas in the U.S.

VacationIdea: 25 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois

Visit Utah: Things to Do

Welcome to Woodstock, Vermont