There are lots of choices. Websites run these features to get you to look at 10 pages instead of only one: more ads.
Here is one of those lists. The #10 city would be my first choice, if the choice were based on geography alone. It’s Auburn, Alabama. Why Auburn?
1. Low income = low cost of living
2. Nice housing at median national prices
4. Auburn University
5. Mild winters
6. No big cities nearby
7. Low crime
8. Socially conservative
9. Bus system
In the list of best cities, several are university towns. I like university towns. There are lots of events on campus aimed at intelligent people. Most of them are free. Also, some university towns have bus transportation to reduce congestion. Auburn is such a city.