WILMINGTON — USA TODAY has its 10Best contest running nationwide in categories ranging from Best Recreational Trail to Best Wine Tasting Room. Wilmington competed against 10 other cities for Best Riverwalk in 2022 and has placed third on the poll.
USA TODAY readers voted on the distinction, with selections initially chosen by travel experts. The winner was Detroit International RiverWalk in Michigan, with second place going to Smale Riverfront Park in Cincinnati, Ohio.
It’s the second year Detroit has secured the top honor. Cincinatti knocked Wilmington down a notch from its 2021 second place.
USA TODAY noted the Port City’s two miles of scenic walkway is appealing because it is “home to a colorful Riverwalk lined with more than 200 cafes, bars and shops.” It also cites the USS North Carolina on the western banks a standout river attraction and the annual Riverfest held in October, featuring a “mock pirate invasion and a standup paddle race.”
The Riverwalk stretches from Nunn Street on the south side of downtown to the Isabella Holmes Bridge. Council members approved a feasibility study last month to see if extending the Riverwalk underneath the bridge through wetlands to connect to the northern part of the Cape Fear is possible. Its design includes offshoot pathways to reach other areas of downtown too.
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