10 places in U.S. (California’s desert is No. 4) Lonely Planet says you should visit next year

Lonely Planet picked Palm Springs and the surrounding desert as a must-see 2017 destination. The photo shows the views from the Aerial Tram that climbs about 8,500 feet above the desert floor.
(Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times)

Why do we love lists? For travelers, it’s always thrilling to see which destinations are generating the most buzz for the coming year.

Lonely Planet’s editors on Tuesday released their top 10 U.S. places you should visit in 2017. Asheville, N.C., takes the No. 1 spot for its artistic vibe and food-and-wine scene, and the “new wave of cool” in Palm Springs and Coachella Valley pushed the area into No. 4.

Four destinations in the West were selected too, in part for their naturally beautiful landscapes. Here are the rest of the rankings (for those who may want to see them all):

2. Western Washington, which covers everything from Seattle to the San Juan Islands.

Seattle's Space Needle
Seattle’s Space Needle
(Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times )

3. Lincoln, Neb., which turns 150 next year.

Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb.
Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb.
(Nati Harnik / AP )

4. California’s low desert, including Palm Springs and national public lands, such as Joshua Tree National Park and the Salton Sea.

Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree National Park
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times )

5. Montana’s Flathead Valley

6. Atlanta

Piedmont Park in Atlanta
Piedmont Park in Atlanta
(Joe Daniel Price / Getty Images )

7. The Adirondack Mountains, which. with a whopping 6 million acres, could fit Yellowstone, the Everglades, Glacier, and Grand Canyon national parks within its area.

Catamount Mountain in the Adirondacks.
Catamount Mountain in the Adirondacks.
(Antonio Olivero / AP )

8. Texas Hill Country’s wine region

9. Denver

10. Florida’s Emerald Coast, along the Gulf of Mexico, from Pensacola to Panama City.


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