Key West among nation’s friendliest cities; Miami, not so much

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How do Florida cities compare with others in terms of their perceived “friendliness”? According to the readers of Conde Nast Traveler, the answer is a mixed bag.

Overall, Southern cities were rated by the 80,000 voters in the Readers’ Choice Survey as more friendly than those in the north — indeed, the top five cities are all below the Mason Dixon Line. In this survey, friendliness in large part means  how welcome a city makes visitors feel.

Charleston, SC, took the first place in friendliness spot; followed by Savannah, GA; San Antonio, TX; Telluride, CO; and New Orleans, LA. The first and only Florida city to appear in the top 10 is Key West, at No. 10.

Readers described this southernmost town as a place where it is “impossible to be stressed out” — and as pleasant, walkable, and a great place to recreate and feast.

But drive just north back to Florida’s mainland, and there’s Miami — rated in this same survey as the 10th least friendly city in the US. This is the only Florida city to be pegged for the bottom, and joins the likes of Newark, Oakland, Atlantic City, Detroit, and The Hamptons as such.

Miami was derided for being “too touristy”, “too trendy” and “overpriced” — but nonetheless a great place to find culture, shopping, nightlife and dining.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.