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Denver, CO
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If you want a city lifestyle that also offers plenty of opportunities to enjoy nature, Denver is a perfect choice. It boasts 4,000 acres of traditional parks, plus another 14,000 acres of mountain parks. Plus, hel-lo mountains! The Rockies are a mere two hours away. And since you'll be burning so many calories biking and hiking, you can indulge guilt free in the city's many award-winning restaurants, which have earned praise from publications ranging from Food & Wine to The New York Times. The food scene is so incredible it earned Denver an honorable mention on our list as one of the best cities for foodies.

One sign that Denver is becoming more tech-centric is the sheer amount of venture capital funding various startups are receiving, which hit $822 million in 2015. A lot of techies have taken notice of what Denver has to offer. According to a study by commercial real estate broker CBRE, high-tech was the industry that rented the most commercial property in metro Denver. So why do tech companies love the city so much?

"It’s the difference between going outside and going outdoors," says Matt Zwiebel, member success manager at Galvanize, a learning community for technology. "We are also lucky to have a really well-balanced work-life balance."

With a median household income 15.6 percent higher than the national median, combined with natural beauty and that easy mountain access, it's not hard to see why Denver is popular with the IT crowd.

Once you're in the mile-high city, it's a snap to get plugged in with the tech community though events held by the Colorado Technology Association, including its annual Tech Summit. Another major draw for the tech crowd is the annual Denver Startup Week, which draws tech, design, and marketing entrepreneurs.

"There is a strong desire [in Denver] to create products, and for some folks that are excited about calling themselves their own boss," says Zwiebel. "That really helps speed things along, and moves the needle in terms of growing the entrepreneurial community."

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