The 20 cities in the world with the best quality of life – Athens is on the list for the first time






The magazine’s Quality of Life Survey presented again this year the top locations that offer well-being and a high standard of living.

In Vienna, they call it Lebenskunst, “the art of living well”. Instead, this phrase, coined by the Austrian capital, fully embodies the city’s quality of life. This is agreed by the research of Monocle, the magazine that since 2006 has published its annual list of the world’s most sustainable cities.

The 20 cities in the world with the best quality of life – Athens is on the list for the first time
Monocle presented again this year the top cities that offer well-being and a high standard of living.

Essential criteria in this research are always safety, crime, international connectivity, climate/sunshine, quality of architecture, public transport, social inclusion, environmental issues and access to nature, urban planning, business conditions, preventive political developments and medical care.

All these factors contribute to an excellent everyday life and a secure future.

The 20 cities in the world with the best quality of life – Athens is on the list for the first time

Vienna awaits you


Monocle’s 2023 survey determined that the most liveable city in the world is Vienna, followed by Copenhagen, Munich and Zurich.

But what makes Vienna such an excellent city to live in? Although Vienna’s imperial architecture is the city’s most recognisable asset, the natural surroundings – hills, lakes and rivers – are even more impressive within the city limits.

The Old Danube Lake, river island and public bathing spots enrich the urban experience and enhance sustainability.

Especially now that the restaurants and museums of the Austrian capital have reopened after the restrictions put in place due to covid-19, the city is once again the ideal place to stay. It offers many opportunities for culture and entertainment, good infrastructure and overall stability.

Also, the effects of Red Vienna’s public housing policies continue to shape the city’s skyline to this day and positively influence the city’s development. The low crime rate and diligent public space management are factors that catapult it to the top of any similar survey.

The 20 cities in the world with the best quality of life – Athens is on the list for the first time


Expensive rents vs Greek hospitality

As with all major crises, the pandemic has starkly highlighted the flaws and follies of society, with the housing, health and safety sectors coming under severe pressure.

North American metropolises, which lack the strong social safety nets of many European and Asian counterparts, have been more exposed to the vicissitudes of the restrictions.

As a result of their impact on citizens’ quality of life, no North American city is included in the magazine’s ranking for the first time since the survey began.

In addition to safety indicators such as crime per capita and trust in the police, the researchers found that the rising cost of living had a more significant impact on the survey than ever before, taking into account the annual increase in average apartment rent, as well as the price of essential goods such as energy and coffee.

That’s why Athens, Greece’s cheap, happy and sometimes chaotic capital, debuted in this year’s ranking, taking 17th place. Other reasons include its exciting food and arts scenes, new infrastructure projects and intelligent efforts to lessen the effects of climate change on the city.

The 20 cities in the world with the best quality of life – Athens is on the list for the first time

The best cities to live in:

1. Vienna, Austria. A city that combines aesthetics, modern architecture and the lowest crime rate.

2. Copenhagen, Denmark. The combination of perfect scores in stability, education and infrastructure and very high scores in culture and healthcare make the Danish capital the second most liveable city in the world.

3. Munich, Germany. Munich has the most robust economy of any other German city. The city also has more than 100 nightclubs and 1000 bars and the lowest crime rates of any other city in Germany.

4. Zurich, Switzerland. Zurich regularly ranks first in quality of life tables in Europe and beyond. The city offers high wages, quality health care, low crime rates, and easy access to various health and recreational activities. On the other hand, Zurich is also known to top the rankings for “most expensive” cities.

5. Stockholm, Sweden. Stockholm is known for its high quality of life. The summer days are long, and the weather is constant. Sweden’s capital is ideal if you want to live somewhere that allows you to experience all four seasons.

6. Tokyo, Japan. Tokyo is the largest and one of the most active and sought-after places to live globally. With all the fantastic food, a convenient public transportation system, and endless things to do, Tokyo certainly does not disappoint. However, it is also a costly city.

7. Helsinki, Finland. As Finland’s largest city, Helsinki has the most cultural opportunities in the country in everything from photography to sculpture. There are dozens of museums and galleries, including the National Museum and the National Gallery, regular festivals and events and plenty of creative industry jobs.

8. Madrid, Spain. Madrid is one of the major European capitals with the best ratio between cost and quality of life. Leisure, sport, culture, art, gastronomy, security and high-quality free public services make the Region of Madrid a privileged destination to live, study, start a business or enjoy beautiful holidays.

9. Lisbon, Portugal. Lisbon is a beautiful place to live, with a fantastic year-round climate. In addition, it is a very affordable European city compared to many other Western capitals

10. Melbourne, Australia. Melbourne is known as one of the most sustainable cities in the world. Often referred to as “the sports capital of the world”, it is also famous for its graffiti alleys, excellent coffee and cultural diversity.

The list is completed by:

11. Berlin, Germany
12. Paris, France
13. Amsterdam, Netherlands
14. Sydney, Australia
15. Singapore
16. Kyoto, Japan
17. Athens, Greece
18. Milan, Italy
19. Oslo, Norway
20. Seoul, South Korea

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