San Luis Obispo Named One of the Happiest Cities in America

National Geographic Explorer and best-selling author Dan Buettner searched for the happiest Americans; #EnduranceTownUSA was yet again named one of America's happiest cities. 

By George Stone, National Geographic

Who are the happiest Americans? Ask this question anywhere from Montauk to Maui and you’re bound to pique interest (you may even pick a fight). While fans of the film Moana might sing the lyrics “Happiness is where you are,” for scientists studying the roots and fruits of happiness, location-specific qualities of place, community, and opportunity powerfully inform the way we feel about our lives.

National Geographic bestselling author Dan Buettner and Gallup’s social scientists teamed up to develop an index that assesses measurable expressions of happiness and identifies where Americans are living their best lives. Designed by Gallup senior scientist Dan Witters, the study established 15 metrics—from eating healthy and learning something new every day to civic engagement, financial security, vacation time, and even dental checkups—that signal happiness. The National Geographic Gallup Special/Blue Zones Index draws on nearly 250,000 interviews conducted with adults from 2014 to 2015 in 190 metropolitan areas across the U.S.

#5: SAN LUIS OBISPO, CALIFORNIA

The area around San Luis Obispo, California, has no shortage of incredible day trips. Locals and visitors can relax at wineries, explore sand dunes, or take in coastal views along hiking and biking trails.

Continue reading: nationalgeographic.com