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One place has stunning beaches, great theater—and airfares that have fallen 2.5% in the last year. Another is one the world’s great culture and culinary capitals, yet hotel prices have dropped by 6.1% in the last year. What does it take for a destination to make it to the top of the Money Best in Travel list? Editor-at-large Marc Peyser takes you on a tour of all 10 winning locations (seven in the United States and three international) and spills the beans on how each earned its spot.

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