America's Favorite City Honors

America's Second Favorite City: Houston wins huge honors from a national mag, but about that No. 1 pick

America's Second Favorite City: Houston wins honors from national mag

downtown Houston, skyline, buildings
National magazine Travel + Leisure ranked Houston as the No. 2 "Favorite City" in the country, based on the results of their 2014 survey. AmericaPictures.net

National magazine Travel + Leisure conducted its eighth annual America's Favorite Cities survey to find out how 1,209 of the nation's cities ranked in 67 categories, with areas ranging from quality of life and food to shopping and culture. And Houston is one of the biggest winners.

The online survey, developed by the editors of Travel + Leisure, received more than 50,000 votes and "the final results reflect a subset of the survey data for 38 cities," according to the magazine. 

It may surprise you that overall — when considering the results from every category — Houston came in at No. 2 on the America's Favorite Cities list. (Perhaps even more surprisingly, Providence won top honors as America's Favorite City.)

In a city obsessed with delicious food and drink, it probably won't surprise you that Houston ranked No. 1 in categories like Best Hamburgers (up from No. 4 in 2013), Best Brunch, Best Wine Bars and Best Specialty Food Markets/Food Halls. Overall, the city performed very well in the Food and Drink category, coming in at No. 2 in Best Bakeries, No. 3 in Best Wine Scene, No. 4 in Best Barbecue (up from No. 5), No. 4 in Best Sandwiches (up from No. 21) and No. 4 in Best Bars.

 Perhaps even more surprisingly, Providence won top honors as America's Favorite City. 

Houstonians are well-known for their love of shopping, so it's rather expected that the city also garnered the No. 1 spots in Best Boutiques (up from No. 18) and Best Home Decor/Design Stores.

The Bayou City also fared extremely well in the Culture category, ranking No. 2 in Best Galleries (up from No. 12), No. 3 in Best Museums (up from No. 12), No. 3 in Best Theaters (up from No. 18), No. 5 in Best Art Scene and No. 5 in Best Concerts (up from No. 26).

In terms of the People category, Houston managed to avoid the top five in the less desirable categories of Most Rude and Most Snobby (rather unsurprisingly, New York City achieved the No. 1 spot in both categories), but the Bayou City did come in No. 2 in terms of Most Intelligent.

Check out Travel + Leisure's site for the complete list.