City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Atlanta among Forbes’ Top 10 fun cities, but it’s no New York

Apparently we’re not the most fun city in the United States, nor are we among the top five cities. According to a one new ranking, Atlanta isn’t even the best spot in the southeast to have a good time. But! We are on the list released this month by, that data-happy purveyor of random rankings. Atlanta falls sixth on its list of America’s Most Entertaining Cities.

Atlanta has previously appeared on Forbes’ lists of great places to retire, not-so-great places for working moms and affordable places to live. It recently lost the title of best city for singles, apparently because we all lived happily ever after, or maybe because our rankings for nightlife and culture were kinda lousy.

Indeed, I believe I’m spoon-feeding the list-making beast just by mentioning this set of rankings. Open wide!

Our, um, competition:

1. New York
2. Chicago
3. Los Angeles
4. Miami (tie)
4. Washington, D.C. (tie)
6. Atlanta
7. Boston (tie)
7. Philadelphia
9. San Francisco
10. Dallas

Just how fun is Atlanta?

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In the story, Forbes said it calculated the rankings using metropolitan statistical areas and stats from AOL City Guides for bars, restaurants, nightclubs, live theater venues, museums and sporting venues, then added in sports teams and previous Best Cities for the Outdoors rankings. These aren’t per capita rankings, so it favors more populous cities, but also points out that, hey: New York is big, there’s a lot going on and you get to pick from all of it, not just your statistical allotment of sports bars and community theaters.

So what do you think — do Forbes’ numbers provide an accurate comparison of fun to be had in Atlanta, versus other cities? Do you pay attention to lists like these when deciding where to live or travel? Mostly, do you feel like there’s enough fun stuff going on here for you to stay busy and happy here in Atlanta? Share you thoughts in the comments!

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49 comments Add your comment


September 9th, 2009
11:42 am

Mike/Weezie – pretty sure I read a lot of sarcasm dripping throughout Steve0’s comment. I don’t usually give all that much credit to these comments, but I think he’s making fun of those who drive 45 minutes from the suburbs to come to party in the “safe” areas intown and scurry right back out there as soon as possible.

Also, Harold, though I like where you’re going with the public transportation argument, the assumption that transit brings crime is a little off-putting. Do people really take the bus to go break into houses? Or hop on after a little late-night mugging?

Me, I love Atlanta, ride my bike to the bars, see all sorts of options for fun and varied things to do here. Great city. You’ve just gotta remember that the cities OTP are not Atlanta…


September 9th, 2009
11:42 am

I lived in boston i lived in orlando i lived in nc i lived in chattanooga, and miami. Atlanta has gone down hill i am only 30, but too many robbies , and traffic is horrible. There way too many black people and there no diversity at all here. Highlands is ok , it the only safe place, but way too far to drive from john’s creek even when i dont drink anymore it the other people on the road. i am leaving soon prob off to chitown for work. Th job situation here sucks too that big thing women come, and go you can find them in chattanooga, nc anywhere, so that not a big deal. i am from here and atlanta is not great city anmymore.


September 9th, 2009
11:41 am

I live in Atlanta, but recently took a trip to New Orleans. Now THAT is a fun town. Surprised it didn’t make the list.

You MUST be kidding

September 9th, 2009
11:40 am

Atlanta is boring as hell is hott!


September 9th, 2009
11:24 am

I am 40 and lived most of my life in Atlanta, its a fun town, all the sports, concerts and all. But if you lived most of your life in one place, you get burned out on it. I want the beach :) I’m burnt if people just moved here, I’m sure they love it, after 40 years it gets old.


September 9th, 2009
11:14 am

Students are getting ROBBED at Tech and State. Students are being KILLED in the AUC. Seems like only the ones getting robbed matters.


September 9th, 2009
11:12 am

Steve0 – I try to have an open mind about people and really make an attempt to treat everyone fair and equal, until I read stuff like what you posted. Then I realize what the point in trying so hard. We’ll never change our perception or your view. You take a small portion of blk people and blame it on us all. I see plenty of white crack-heads and meth-heads downtown, but I guess you’re not scared of them, only the black ones? I understand some white people are afraid how “there” country changes and most minorities what the place to continue changing! With that said I can’t wait until 50, 60, 80 years down the line when white people WILL be the monitory, let’s see if you can take it as much as you can give it!


September 9th, 2009
11:11 am

If Atlanta is such a “fun” city, then why do tourists and conventioneers always list it dead last in places they’d like to go?


September 9th, 2009
11:07 am

Atlanta with its big-city anonymity, its gentrification, and huge population base has some serious problems taking root that seem to be about to run away like fertilized kudzu. How many more students need to be robbed at Ga Tech or Ga State? How many innocent people should die from stray bullets? I think for ATL to even be in the midst of the rankings of some of these great cities is skewered.


September 9th, 2009
10:59 am

Oh I remember the days, when Buckhead was fun. Backstreet was open, then hurricane Katrina came and sprayed all the trash to Atlanta and hasn’t been the same since. Shhhhh about the V.Higlands, don’t want that to be ruined as well. Oh and Philly is the pits to Philadelphia Phil!!