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Budget Travel Goes Green

Road trips to America's 3 greenest cities

Think eco-tourism means heading to Costa-Rica? It can, if you're looking for an eco-alternative to a fuel-gobbling Caribbean cruise, but America has plenty of green all its own. Pack up the kids and hit the road this summer on a vacation that won't break the bank - and will leave you feeling better about your carbon footprint.

Green AttractionsGreen AttractionsPopular Science scored American cities based on green criteria including electricity, transportation, green living, recycling and their "green perspective." A trip to one of these eco-friendly spots makes an affordable vacation with lots to learn. Travel to the nearest one to avoid nasty emissions (but at least you're sparing the world some jet fuel) and make smart choices when you buy food, to avoid extra packaging.

Portland, Oregon

This first place city has great public transit, delicious coffee, and a laid back urban vibe: perfect for hip and crunchy mamas or young families.


San Francisco, California

A close second, San Francisco will go well if your kids are in the terrible tweens. With attractions ranging from zoos, to the Museum of Modern Art, you won't run out of things to do.


Boston, Massachusetts

Your family won't have trouble eating locally produced food in Boston, with plenty of New England seafood to dive into. As a bonus, the third greenest city in America also has a great historical attraction designed for walking. The Freedom Trail is marked with red (or bricks) and leads to important sites from the American Revolution.


If you can't get to one of the top three cities, check out the rest of the 50 greenest cities in America at PopSci.com.

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