6. Chapel Hill, North Carolina
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was the nation’s first public university, opening its doors back in 1795. Its historic buildings, oak tree lined parks and beautiful gardens have made this a special setting to study in for over 200 years. Chapel Hill is known for its great food, vibrant music scene, artsy murals and annual street fair. Sports play a big role in the town’s identity, and everyone seems to comes out to support the local teams. There are plenty of bluffs, parks, reserves, trails and lakes in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill triangle if you need a nature escape.