The Best Place in the U.S. to Live… That You’ve Never Heard Of

Apex, North Carolina, took the crown on Money Magazine's list of the top 50 cities to live in America, released today. If you’re furrowing your brow at the mysterious locale, let us introduce you to the town that has community, charm, economic opportunity, stellar education, and affordability in spades. Yes, really!

According to Money, Apex has “small-town charm, plus all the benefits of being close to a big city. … The community is friendly, and there are a variety of activities for residents to enjoy, from the youngest to the oldest.” In 2013, Apex ranked ninth in the country, and since 2000, the North Carolina town has seen its population balloon to nearly double. The town is growing smart, though, building better, smarter roads and outfitting schools with top-tier technology for growing class sizes. A major facet of Apexs desireability is its lucrative and flourishing employment opportunities: namely, high-paying tech industry jobs. Just 18 miles away is Raleigh’s 7000-acre Research Triangle Park, where over 200 companies, including IBM and Cisco, have offices and employ more than 50,000 workers.

Apex also boasts plenty of community-friendly events, such as an annual jazz festival, weekly farmers markets, and the PeakFest street fair, an annual music, food, and crafts fair that attracts more than 15,000 visitors from the surrounding areas every summer.

Compared with the cost of living in other tech towns, Apex also stands out: A three-bedroom home costs an average of $265,000, compared to more than $1 million for a comparable home in Silicon Valley.

To see the complete list of the best cities to live in the United States, head over to Money.

Do you think your city should be on this list? Tell us in the comments!