Kansas City named one of this summer’s top 20 travel destinations in the country

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Kansas City was named a top 20 summer travel destination in the country Wednesday by the consumer finance site, Wallet Hub.

Kansas City ranks top in the nation for the price of three-star hotels and also has the shortest duration of cheap flights, according to the study.

"I'm not surprised that KC fares well on that list. The inventory that's here is beautiful, and the pricing is aggressive," said Craig Schroeder, general manager of The Raphael Hotel.

The Kansas City Zoo said roughly 20% of its 1 million annual visitors come from areas where it's more than a day trip.

"We just love it when they roll into town. Love to see those out of state license plates in our parking lot," Kansas City Zoo Director Randy Wisthoff said.

But to attract tourists there still has to be enough for them to do. Kansas City ranks 46th for number of attractions.

Alex Gutierrez and Erin Hall probably wouldn't have been in Kansas City on Wednesday for the first time if the Texas Rangers weren't in town.

"I did hear about barbecue, but honestly I didn't know anything about it. This is why we are venturing out before the game, but honestly I've never thought about going to Kansas City," Hall said.

Wisthoff countered the study's rating on Kansas City's attractions.

"We've got great museums, cultural centers, theme parks, water parks, just a whole variety of things," he said.

Schroeder said Kansas City has one bonus many other travel destinations can't match.

"One of the things you get in this area is that warm hospitality, and you can't put a price on it," he said.

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