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Best Cities 2010: 10 Healthiest Cities

  • Our most deeply-held wish as parents is for the good health of our kids. Living in one of these stellar towns makes staying healthy that much easier, with access to excellent medical care and strong support for an active lifestyle. We chose our healthiest cities based on a number of criteria, among them the number of quality children's hospitals and pediatricians in the area, the ratio of hospitals and family physicians per 100,000 people, and by comparing air quality measurements.

    See our list of the least healthy cities

    (Our list was compiled by using a list of the top 100 cities by population, adding in well-known smaller cities too, and removing cities so close to other large cities that they would have similar data. Then we crunched numbers in 3 health categories to come up with our rankings.)

    #1: Richmond, VA
    The Virginia city is best known for being the site of Patrick Henry's famous "Give me liberty or give me death" speech, but now it can also boast its ranking as our healthiest U.S. city, thanks to excellent air quality and top-notch healthcare institutions.

    Read more about Richmond

    Want to check out these towns? Save a bundle when you book your trip online through Parenting Privileges. You'll get cash back on your reservations at Expedia, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, or Priceline.com!

  • #2: Orlando, FL
    If being happy is good for your health, then doesn't it follow that the happiest place on earth would also be one of the healthiest? Theme park mecca Orlando -- site of Disney World, SeaWorld and Universal Studios, among others -- is also home to an exceptionally high number of well-respected pediatricians, making it the second healthiest city on our list.

    Read more about Orlando
  • Jon Platek/Wikipedia (CC Licensed)

    #3: Sioux Falls, SD
    The air doesn't get much fresher than in South Dakota, and the Sioux Falls area features some of the nation's best parklands, with more than 2,000 acres of dedicated land. The city also has an usually high number of hospitals for its size, which ensures faster and better care when you're sick.

    Read more about Sioux Falls

     

  • #4: Spokane, WA
    Like #3 on our list, Spokane is an outdoorsy family's dream, with 4000+ acres of parkland, and the 67-mile River Centennial Trail.

    Read more about Spokane
  • #5: Anchorage, AK
    You may embody the frontier spirit if you live in the 49th state, but you'll still enjoy thoroughly modern medical care, with plenty of great family physicians in the area.

    Read more about Anchorage
  • Andrew Horne/Wikipedia (CC Licensed)

    #6 Ann Arbor, MI
    Home to the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor's a classic college town, but it's also the sixth healthiest city according to our survey, due to its clean air and the excellent U of M Hospital.

    Read more about Ann Arbor

     

  • #8: Minneapolis, MN
    22 lakes exist within Minneapolis city limits, providing endless possibilities for outdoor recreation. Also upping the health factor? The city's three quality hospitals. Read more about Minneapolis

  • #9: Augusta, GA
    Known as the Garden City, Augusta also boasts a two-tier riverwalk alongside the Savannah River, giving families easy opportunities for exercise and fresh air. Augusta is also home to MCGHealth, a leading children's hospital.

    Read more about Augusta
  • #10: Syracuse, NY
    Home to the eponymous university, Syracuse is also home to Golisano Children's Hospital, which serves as a referral center for upstate New York. Residents also love Green Lakes State Park, which features two glacial lakes, a golf course, and miles of cross-country ski trails.

    Read more about Syracuse

    Want to check out these towns? Save a bundle when you book your trip online through Parenting Privileges. You'll get cash back on your reservations at Expedia, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, or Priceline.com!

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