This Boulder County city boasts 20 parks and 20 miles of trails. Especially impressive is Waneka Lake Park, with awe-inspiring views of the Rockies, a reservoir for boating and a wildlife preserve beloved for birding.
Meanwhile, Old Town Lafayette is dotted with sculptures on loan from artists around the country and hosts cultural events like the monthly Art Night Out and annual festivals celebrating beer, peaches and even oatmeal.
You can reach all of this for free using the city’s on-demand transit program. Hail a ride between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. using the Ride Free Lafayette app or just hop aboard.
There’s a notable sustainability push in Lafayette, too. The public library has a free seed exchange program and there’s also a community garden that has plots available to rent. Several local farms are open to visitors and volunteers, and sell at nearby farmers' markets.
Like most U.S. cities, though, housing prices in Lafayette have increased. Its typical home now sells for about $606,000. However, apartment rentals haven’t changed as much: the median cost is around $2,000 for a one-bedroom or a couple hundred more for two. Still, the homeownership rate in Lafayette is higher than the national average at approximately 70%. — Jhoni Jackson
Median Household Income
Median Home Price
Sources: Population and median household income provided by Synergos Technologies Inc.; unemployment rate (by county) provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics; and median home price provided by ATTOM Data Solutions.