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Will's Favorite places in America

Naming this my favorite places is a bit tricky to do. I have a whole lot of favorite places that I have visited. But this article is about my favorite places that I wasn't looking for. Just these little places that I found to be special for no particular reason.

This isn't about monuments, big cities, national parks, mountain ranges or magnificent drives. This is about secret little places that left an impression on me.



Panguitch Utah -

The state of Utah overall is magnificent. It is a quiet and beautiful state. You don't hear a whole lot about it. But it has beautiful landscapes and lots of national parks. I spent a week roaming around Utah and ended up spending one day and one night in a little town (population ~1,500) called Panguitch. It's an unusual name and an unusual little place. It is very old fashioned with a main street, a couple of restaurants, a couple of Inn's and even a movie theatre. There is a feeling in this little town, a feeling of peace and beauty. I stayed at a quaint little motel called The Blue Pine.

Panguitch is located in a good spot right on route 89 which is a major route in Utah. And the town is about a half hour drive north from Bryce Canyon National Park. And about ninety minutes north of Zion National Park. So, from Panguitch you are in a very good base to see a lot of southwestern Utah.


Raymond Mississippi

This little town with a population of about 2,000 is just a little east of Jackson Mississippi. I traveled here just to see a castle (Raymond Castle) and I was stunned by the bucolic atmosphere in the town. It has a cute little town center with a water tank and well, it reminded me a lot of Mayberry. If you have a picture in your mind as to what small town America is Raymond Mississippi will fit the bill.









Clermont Iowa

I am absolutely in love with Iowa the state. I took a long drive right across the northern part of it on route 18. (I consider this drive one of the best drives in America) The best words that come to mind for me as I drove hundreds of miles through beautiful rolling countryside with lots of corn and other crops, is God's country. It truly is God's country. And, along route 18 I passed through Clermont. The population is listed at being around 800 and I got the distinct feeling that this little town has been on the decline for a long time. It's a shame but the feeling came over me that this was a quiet and conservative little town that would be a great place to live. It has a unique picturesqueness to it.

As a side note, while looking up this town so I could write this article I discovered that parts of a movie was filmed here. It is the movie called "The Straight Story". And it is about how an elderly man takes a long drive by lawnmower to mend his relationship with an ill brother. I have never seen the movie but I heard of it. And to me it perfectly captures just what I feel about this little town.


Scranton Pennsylvania

I spent a week in Scranton. I stayed in a Microtel (Motel) and my overall experience was remarkable. I spent a lot of time driving around Scranton during the day and during the evening. The overwhelming feeling I got from this city and from the people is a 1970's kind of innocence. This is a good place to live with a lot of good people. In the evenings people were out for walks and children were playing in the streets. I took this as a wonderful sign that everybody felt very safe and comfortable. They probably have a very low crime rate. Something rare to see in a small city.









MarbleHead Massachusetts - If you are looking for old New England then Marblehead is it. I visited this town to see a castle and fell in love with the town itself. Can you picture in your mind what life was like in the novel "Moby Dick". If you can then you are picturing Marblehead. It is amazingly old with lots of narrow and winding cobblestone streets right on the atlantic ocean. It is on a peninsula north of Boston. Walking and driving the streets I almost expected to see British red coats chasing after a man on a horse shouting "The British Are Coming"!