Why It's Worth It

Now is the time to witness a metamorphosis in Cleveland, Ohio. Decades of industrial grit are peeling away to reveal a diamond-in-the-rough destination for food, culture, and outdoor recreation on a sparkling Great Lake. The legacy of the former elite lives on through the many cultural institutions at University Circle and Playhouse Square, but the city's working-class spirit shapes Cleveland's culinary landscape, anchored by the West Side Market and bolstered by the current crop of celebrity chefs. —Laura Watilo Blake