Big cities are great, especially when you can take the occasional break from the hustle and bustle. Luckily for Albertnas, busy centres like Calgary and Edmonton are incredibly close to some beautiful destinations – one of which has just been named among the 23 most beautiful small towns in the world!

According to Travel + Leisure, Banff is high on the minds of those who can appreciate scenic landscapes and striking architecture, just like what you’ll see in Gordes, France and Shirakawa-go, Japan, which also made their list.

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Revered for its year-round beauty and proximity to some fantastic ski hills, the Alberta mountain town (and only Canadian spot on their list) is well known for its souvenir shopping, hot springs, and its ‘Castle in the Rockies.’

In addition to this, it’s not uncommon to see a bear, a deer or a moose in and around the area, which makes for a fantastic story and even better photos.

 

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As for the rest of the list? Here’s who else made the top 23 most beautiful small towns in the world:

  1. Gordes, France
  2. Shirakawa-go, Japan
  3. Giethoorn, Netherlands
  4. Stepantsminda, Georgia
  5. Oia, Greece
  6. Cherrapunji, India
  7. Guatapé, Colombia
  8. Stowe, Vermont
  9. Ban Rak Thai, Thailand
  10. Portofino, Italy
  11. Grindelwald, Switzerland
  12. Lake Placid, New York
  13. Bacalar, Mexico
  14. Moulay Idriss Zerhoun, Morocco
  15. Ilulissat, Greenland
  16. Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany
  17. Marsaxlokk, Malta
  18. Frigiliana, Spain
  19. San Sebastian Bernal, Mexico
  20. Banff, Canada
  21. Whitefish, Montana
  22. Byron Bay, Australia
  23. Stone Town of Zanzibar, Tanzania

Which towns have you been to?