The World's Highest Quality Of Life Is Still In Europe

tuileries gardens parisBeautiful but doesn’t even crack the top 10

Photo: Flickr user kariek

Every year Monocle Magazine calculates the best cities in the world to live in, and the 2011 results are in.The editors of the lifestyle magazine seek to recognise the world’s best cities, ranking them based on economic and social factors in addition to hipper things like “24 hour metabolism” where cities were given extra points for not shutting down at 10 PM.

Other factors involved in Monocle’s ranking system included whether the cities had well-tended bars, the amount of green space in cities, how the city used architectural planning and urban ambition.

We’ve listed the rankings and added information about the best cities in the world, and it appears that despite economic woes, European cities are still the most attractive places to live…

#25 Seattle

Population: 608,660

Seattle is one of the most literate cities in America, and as the home of Starbucks, has no shortage of coffee.

Source: Monocle

#24 Montreal

Population: 3,859,318

Monocle has called Montreal 'Canada's Cultural Capital'.

Source: Monocle

#23 Lisbon

Population: 517,802

Along with Barcelona, Lisbon has the warmest winters in all of Europe.

Source: Monocle

#22 Hamburg

Population: 1,754,182

Germany's second-large city is also one of its most affluent as it has the highest GDP in the country.

Source: Monocle

#21 Kyoto

Population: 1,465,917

Kyoto has more than 2000 religious places, and Japan's past can be seen in the architecture of the former imperial city.

Source: Monocle

#20 Vancouver

Population: 578,041

Vancouver was nicknamed 'Hollywood North' and more movies are shot in the temperate city than any other city except for Los Angeles.

Source: Monocle

#19 Honolulu

Population: 374,658

The weather in Honolulu rarely gets above 90 or below 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

Source: Monocle

#18 Portland

Population (city): 583,776

Portland has been ranked as one of the greenest cities in the world.

Source: Monocle

#17 Hong Kong

Population: 7,061,200

Hong Kong has consistently ranked high on the Global Competitiveness Index.

Source: Monocle

#16 Fukuoka, Japan

Population: 1,461,631

The oldest city in Japan was named one of the 10 most dynamic cities in the world by Newsweek.

Source: Monocle

#15 Singapore

Population: 5,076,700

Breathe in deep, Singapore has the best air quality in Asia.

Source: Monocle

#14 Barcelona

Population (city): 1,621,537

Barcelona ranks at number one on a list of the world's best beach cities, according to National Geographic.

Source: Monocle

#13 Auckland

Population: 1,354,900

New Zealand's biggest city is also one of the more affordable global capitals to live in, according to Mercer.

Source: Monocle

#12 Paris

Population: 2,193,031

The city of lights consistently ranks near the top in lists of the world's best cities, but according to The Economist's Intelligence Unit, it's also the most expensive.

Source: Monocle

#11 Stockholm

Population (city): 851,155

Sweden's largest city is also the cleanest city in Europe.

Source: Monocle

#10 Madrid

Population: 3,273,049

Madrid is Spain's most visited city, and the fourth most visited city by tourists in Europe.

Source: Monocle

#9 Tokyo

Population: 13,010,279

Tokyo is the highest ranked city in Asia, and the city's restaurants have among the top number of Michelin stars in the world.

Source: Monocle

#8 Berlin

Population: 3,450,889

Berlin was praised for its city planning by the UN, and named a city of design.

Source: Monocle

#7 Sydney

Population: 4,575,532

Sydney ranks on a list of the top places in the world for innovation.

Source: Monocle

#6 Vienna

Population: 1,712,903

Vienna is praised for its urban design, and ranks near the top of lists in urban planning.

Source: Monocle

#5 Melbourne

Population: 4,077,036

Melbourne has been called the cultural capital of Australia.

Source: Monocle

#4 Munich

Population: 1,353,186

Munich dropped three spots in the rankings, in 2010 it was Monocle's city with the best quality of life in the world.

Source: Monocle

#3 Copenhagen

Population (city): 541,559

Forbes ranked Copenhagen on its best places to live in Europe list, noting its high number of Michelin-starred restaurants and top-tier medical services.

Source: Monocle

#2 Zurich

Population: 372,047

The financial centre of Switzerland, Zurich is also Europe's wealthiest city.

Source: Monocle

#1 Helsinki

Population: 588,941

Helsinki is the world's design capital for 2012. Monocle's editor, Tyler Brule said that Helsinki was chosen as the world's bes city because, 'the Finnish capital stands out for its fundamental courage to rethink its urban ambitions, and for possessing the talent, ideas and guts to pull it off.

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