Oregon town named one of America’s most beautiful. Here’s why

Joseph, Oregon is home to incredible mountain views, charming storefronts and some seriously wild adventures. It now also has the honor of being named one of the most beautiful small towns in the country.

That’s according to a ranking by travel magazine Travel + Leisure, which included Joseph on its list of the 20 most beautiful small towns in the U.S. on Sunday. The list comes on the heels of a similar ranking by Architectural Digest in October, which chose Manzanita on the Oregon coast.

Joseph, also known as the “Swiss Alps of Oregon,” joins Leavenworth, Washington as the only Pacific Northwest towns on the Travel + Leisure list, though nearby Wallace, Idaho also earned a spot.

And while the list is numbered, author Carrie Dennis never indicates that this is a ranking, writing that these are “20 of the most beautiful small towns in America, all with a population under 20,000.” The towns chosen for inclusion are listed in alphabetical order by state – at least through Cody, Wyoming at number 17.

Writing about Joseph, Dennis quoted Travel Oregon communications manager Allison Keeney, who hailed the snowcapped Wallowa Mountains, the green pastures and scenic Wallowa Lake.

“That’s not to say human-made items don’t deserve their own moments, too: Main Street, which runs through the center of the town, features centuries-old buildings and epic bronze sculptures of historic figures, including members of the Nez Perce tribe,” Dennis adds.

Joseph, nestled into the Wallowas in the far, northeastern corner of Oregon, has become a popular tourist town over the years, offering an abundance of outdoor opportunities. Hikers, backpackers, and horseback riders can explore the nearby Eagle Cap Wilderness in the mountains, while boaters and campers can enjoy Wallowa Lake State Park. Hells Canyon, the deepest river gorge in North America, is also nearby, as is the Zumwalt Prairie, which comes alive with wildflowers in late spring.

Downtown Joseph is home to businesses like Arrowhead Chocolates and the Valley Bronze of Oregon foundry, which offers tours to the public. And while the beloved Gold Room Pizza shut down last fall, other local restaurants are still holding down the fort, like The Blythe Cricket, La Laguna and the Terminal Gravity brewpub in neighboring Enterprise.

Those who want a view of it all can take a ride on the Wallowa Lake Tramway, which runs to the summit of Mount Howard, giving incredible vistas of this beautiful corner of Oregon.

Looking down at the town and up at the mountains, it’s easy to see why people fall in love with the place. Those who have been to Joseph will no doubt be unsurprised by its latest honor.

— Jamie Hale

503-294-4077; jhale@oregonian.com; @HaleJamesB

Our journalism needs your support. Please become a subscriber today at OregonLive.com/subscribe

Source link

Up to 80% OFF Black Friday Early Access @ tomtop.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: