Copenhagen, Denmark is one of the happiest countries in the world
A new international study has revealed the world’s best cities to live in, but surprisingly, travel hot spots New York, London and Paris failed to land in the top 10.
Measuring the quality of life inhabitants can expect while living in each city, the study used access to health, housing and education as markers, plus environmental, social and economic conditions.
For the seventh year in a row, Austrian capital Vienna came out on top, followed by Zurich, Auckland and Munich. London scored 39th out of 230 cities.
Used by big businesses to help plot expansion plans, and to inform decisions about how much members of staff should be paid, the annual Mercer Quality of Living survey also takes crime rates and personal safety into account.
From Vienna to Munich, Dusseldorf and Sydney, take a look at the world's 10 best cities to live in, and what makes them so special.
“Vienna scores highly in a number of categories,” explains the Mercer report. “It provides a safe and stable environment to live in, a high level of public utilities and transport facilities, and good recreational facilities.”
As well as coming in second place overall, Zurich was also named as one of the safest cities in the world by the study, outperforming even Vienna in the personal safety category.
Auckland, New Zealand
Beating capital city Wellington, New Zealand’s Auckland ranked higher in Mercer’s quality of life categories than all other cities in the Pacific region, as well as coming in at number three overall.
Yet another Western European city in the top five, Munich also outperformed its homeland capital city in the rankings.
Trumping Ottawa by an impressive 12 places, Vancouver with its surrounding mountains and coastline completed the world’s five best cities.
With its impressive art scene, Dusseldorf is primed to be the next European hot spot, as well as the one of the best cities to live and work in.
Ranked as the fifth best city to live in within Western Europe and the seventh overall across the globe, Frankfurt's strong financial hub makes it a prime location for business expansion.
Switzerland has long been famed for its low crime rates and high standard of living, so it’s little surprise to see Geneva backing up Zurich in the top 10 places to live.
One of the few capital cities to make it into the top 10, colourful Copenhagen’s impressive ranking adds to Denmark’s reputation as one of the happiest countries in the world.
With its rare mix of beach and city life, Sydney ranked second only to Auckland in the best cities to live in within the Pacific region, completing the overall top 10.