Real City Guides
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Taco Crawls And Crypt Visits! A Topographical Tour Of Oakland

This post is brought to you by HomeAway. Discover the world’s largest selection of vacation home rentals with HomeAway.com. Let’s stay together.

I like cities with a little grit and texture, with character. And just like with people, it’s the ups and downs that build character, not sunshine and lollipops. Oakland is a city of highs and lows. And it knows it. Lately, some things have been looking up. There’s been some smart growth downtown, and Oakland managed a spot on The New York Times’ list of "places to go in 2012." But unlike some of its more glamorous neighbors, Oakland still feels grounded and inclusive, [...]

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Lobstah And Crafts! A Summertime Guide To Portland (The Real One, In Maine)

This post is brought to you by HomeAway. Discover the world’s largest selection of vacation home rentals with HomeAway.com. Let’s stay together.

Portland, Maine, was my first city. I grew up outside it, in Cape Elizabeth, so I always think I know it, but every time I go home, I find it slowly turning into a better place than I remembered, maybe even the place I’ll want to return to someday. What I loved about Portland growing up is still true: there are lots of bookstores, especially used ones, old bars and vintage shops that are nearly junk shops. It is still quiet, with beautiful skies, and [...]

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A Minnesota Nice Guide To The Twin Cities

If there’s one thing that Minnesotans love talking about, it’s how great Minnesota is. People from Minnesota are, in real life, what people from New York are like on television—there isn’t anywhere else that matters, unless it’s to serve as our mortal enemy (I'm looking at you, Wisconsin). We're like the world's friendliest braggarts. I grew up here and, in my role as a state proselytizer, I've so far managed to convert two Chicago-born college friends into Minnesotans, and it’s only a matter of time before I get to the rest of you.

Should you get a chance to visit the Twin Cities, here are some things you [...]