Sometimes we need a bit of a reminder of the beauty in our own backyard.
The folks at WorldAtlas.com has collectively named St. Charles/Geneva as one of the top 15 most beautiful towns in America. The website cites what we already know to be true about the tri-cities: the quaint shops, beautiful trails, and vintage hotels.
Curiously, they exclude Batavia from the official rankings, but do mention Batavia in the description:
Just 40 miles west of downtown Chicago, and even closer to the international hub of O’Hare Airport, are the sister communities of St. Charles and Geneva, Illinois. Both are on the Fox River and offer a soothing setting with some light social activities peppered in. The area is rich in boutique shops, vintage hotels, identity-driven restaurants and cafes, dog-friendly parks, riverside walking paths, and chipper residents. This tri-city area (which also includes Batavia, a little further South down the river) exudes plenty of small-town goodness while still being within shouting distance of one of the great American cities.
Other cities that join StC and Geneva on the list include Haleiwa, Hawaii; Sedona, Arizona; Bozeman, Montana; Gatlinburg, Tennessee; Cloudcroft, New Mexico; Homer, Alaska; Moab, Utah; Bend, Oregon, Key West, Florida; South Haven, Michigan; Skaneateles, New York; Brevard, North Carolina; Forks/La Push, Washington;
You can check out the entire list here.