It may be the oldest city in Iowa, but Dubuque has a more modern claim to fame and it's all thanks to the fact that George R.R. Martin lived a part of his life there.

Back in the late 70s, Martin and his then wife moved from Chicago to the riverfront of eastern Iowa. He worked as an English and journalism professor at Clarke College for a few years before they made the decision to move away.

During his stay in the best state in the nation, Martin was inspired to create his award-winning book series. Maybe you've heard of "Game of Thrones"?

With Iowa's bitter winters and Dubuque's scenic bluffs in mind, Martin was able to picture and describe the setting of the books. So the next time you catch an episode of "Game of Thrones," imagine the characters are in Dubuque, Iowa instead of Westeros.

Read more about each state's underrated cities at Thrillist.