Original vienna downtown livable.jpg?1534874575?ixlib=rails 0.3

Vienna claimed the title of the world’s most livable city in The Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual index after Melbourne, Australia, topped the list for seven years in a row.

The Economist Intelligence Unit recently released its annual ranking of the world’s most livable cities and for the first time in nearly a decade, Melbourne, Australia, doesn’t top the list. After coming in second last year, Vienna, Austria, claimed the top spot for the first time in the survey’s 72-year history with a score of 99.1 out of 100, narrowly displacing Melbourne, which came in second this year with a score of 98.4 after seven consecutive years at the top.

The rest of the top 10 is dominated by cities in Japan (Osaka and Tokyo both ranked), Canada (Calgary, Vancouver, and Toronto came in fourth, sixth, and seventh respectively), and Australia (Sydney and Adelaide got top spots, too). In fact, the only other European city to make the top 10 list is Copenhagen, Denmark, which came in ninth with a score of 96.8. Cities in the United States didn’t even manage to crack the top 20, with Honolulu, Hawaii, coming in at No. 23.

The Most Livable Cities in the World 2018:

  1. Vienna, Austria
  2. Melbourne, Australia
  3. Osaka, Japan
  4. Calgary, Canada
  5. Sydney, Australia
  6. Vancouver, Canada
  7. Toronto, Canada
  8. Tokyo, Japan
  9. Copenhagen, Denmark
  10. Adelaide, Australia

So what makes Vienna outrank all the other great cities of the world? The Economist Intelligence Unit bases its annual rankings of 140 cities around the world on stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure. If you’re considering moving abroad, these categories are all something to be considered when picking a city to begin expat life. But even if you only have a week to spare, Vienna’s cultural scene, walkable city center, and iconic cafés all make it a strong contender for your next city getaway.

article continues below ad
Inside the Vienna State Opera

It’s worth setting aside an entire afternoon to explore the collections at Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum, but also make time for the city’s world-class music scene. For just a few euro, you can snag tickets to the standing-room-only section at the Vienna State Opera.   


A post shared by Iva (@ivamajic) on

It may not be a scientific fact that eating cake makes your life better, but it’s safe to say that Vienna’s famous Sachertorte—a chocolate cake filled with apricot jam—will bring a smile to your face. For the classics, go to Hotel Sacher or Demel; you also can find it at more casual spots, including Café Landtmann or Kaffee Alt Wien.     

Vienna’s Augarten is beautiful place to watch the leaves change in the fall.

Even better, Viennese are happy to welcome travelers to their city. According to a 2016 survey of more than 2,000 residents of Vienna by the Vienna Tourist Board, 90 percent of them said that the city, its residents, and its economy benefit from tourism and 82 percent believe that their everyday life is not disrupted by tourists. To experience Vienna like a local, head to one of the city’s many green spaces. Slightly off the regular tourist’s map, the leafy tree-lined lanes of the Augarten are also home to a porcelain museum and the MuTh Concert Hall, where the Vienna Boys’ choir regularly performs.

article continues below ad

>> Next: The Top 10 Countries Where Locals Feel Safest