I was flipping through the latest issue of Time Out London, a free weekly magazine that focuses on food, attractions, art, culture, shopping and nightlife.
While much of the magazine is devoted to reviews of restaurants, movies, plays, and upcoming events, there is the occasional feature story, and this week’s copy of the magazine had a story: The Most Exciting Cities in the World Right Now.
Here’s a blurb about the ranking:
What’s the greatest city in the world? It’s a hotly contested title – but after asking 15,000 people all over the world, we think we’ve come up with a pretty convincing answer. Having quizzed thousands of urbanites for this year’s Time Out City Life Index, we scored 32 cities on criteria such as food, drink, culture, friendliness, affordability, happiness and liveability.
We collaborated with Tapestry Research to survey 15,000 people in 32 cities: London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Paris, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon, Porto, Berlin, Zurich, Istanbul, Moscow, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Philadelphia, Austin, Washington, DC, Boston, Mexico City, Tel Aviv, Dubai, Sydney, Melbourne, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai and Bangkok.
Here are some of the results, along with a brief write-up for each of the cities:
Number 1: Chicago: Chicagoans raved about their city’s bar scene, its live music and culture, its local neighbourhoods and its affordability. It was one of the happiest and proudest cities worldwide. In fact, it only fell short on safety and whether it had become a better place to live over time.
Number 3: New York: Despite ranking joint first as the most stressed city in the world, New York excelled when it came to culture, nightlife, eating and drinking. It also scored perhaps surprisingly high for happiness, with a huge majority saying they’re free to be themselves and they’d still live in the city if money were no object.
Number 4: London: The British capital is one of the world’s best cities for culture and eating, and Londoners are happier than you might expect. But a low liveability score (with the most stress and the longest commutes in Europe, plus poor affordability) pushed it down into fifth place.
Number 9: Philadelphia!: Philly was rated the most affordable city in the world, and one of the most enjoyable to live in, but scored badly when it came to whether people would stay if money were no object – though it still made it into the global top ten.
Number 30: Boston: Boston was one of the worst-performing cities overall, with poor scores for bars, nightlife, live music and culture bringing it in at number 30 out of 32. It was also one of the least affordable cities surveyed. But people here are pretty happy, and it’s the safest US city we surveyed apart from New York.
If you would like to see the complete set of rankings, click here. It looks like I’ve got a lot of great cities I need to visit, starting with Chicago.
I also must admit I was a bit surprised when I saw the rankings. As much as I love Philly, and consider it one of the greatest cities in the world (from my very limited perspective), I always feel that we are overlooked in such rankings.
So it was nice to make the top 10, to be the number three city in the U.S., and to beat Boston so easily.
I hope it’s a good omen for the Super Bowl.
*Image from Time Out London