Athens, Ga.

This community some 70 miles east of Atlanta is home to the 34,700-student University of Georgia, which provides Gen Y-friendly nightlife and cultural activities.

R.E.M. and the B-52s got their starts in Athens, and Rolling Stone magazine dubbed the 115,000-population city's clubs the "No. 1 College Music Scene" in 2003.

"The music scene in Athens is surprisingly hot," Reynolds says.

She adds that the university provides young adults with lots of continuing-education and spectator-sports opportunities, while Athens also hosts the Sandy Creek Nature Center and other outdoor sites.


Gen Y'ers will also appreciate Athens' low 6.5% jobless rate, $804-a-month average rent and $174,900 median home price.

Realtor.com lists some 1,200 properties for sale there. Prices range from $18,900 for a bank-owned two-bedroom condo to $3.5 million for an 11-acre estate.

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