The Best Cities in the World in 2020

Published 2020-10-14 12:00:00
Kiyomizu Dera Temple in Kyoto, Japan - Designed by lifeforstock / Freepik

A new survey listed the 10 best cities in the world, based on a travel magazine's readers choice. With the travel industry at its lowest level ever with the consequences of the pandemic restriction, it seems that people went back to more conservative and classic choices, with cities renowned for their cultural and architectural assets.

In the Best family, we call the 10 best big cities in the world... before the next poll, showing a different result! The Condé Nast Traveler magazine claims to have the biggest and most influential annual travel awards in the business (or at least for US travellers). Last week, they have released their latest Reader's choice awards. And there is a collection of Best something: The Best Cities in the World, Best Countries in the World, Best Hotels in the World... etc.

It is a little bit surprising in 2020 as the tourist industry has been mostly muted since the beginning of the year and the Covid-19 crisis. Not only most of the planes have been grounded for many months, but the vast majority of country imposed restrictions and invited people not to travel. In any case, we can assume it was based on trips made in 2019 and it might give us ideas for 2021 or later when the pandemic will be behind us.

In their 33rd annual survey, there is no New York, London or Paris in the top 10 of the most loved big cities in the world. You will find Kyoto,one of the most well-preserved cities in Japan, as number one. Lyon in France in second, best known for its gastronomy (the "bouchon lyonnais") and (according to the US magazine) "a more intimate atmosphere" than Paris. Singapore comes third to complete this podium. Sydney is number 4 and we find the usual cities in the list such as Vienna (5), Porto (7), Copenhagen (9) and Lisbon (10). There is no doubt that the large pedestrian-zones in some city centres have played a big role: Vienna, Helsinki, Copenhagen for example have made part of the city car-free.

Lyon from Notre Dame de Fourviere basilica

The full list is:

  1. Kyoto, Japan
  2. Lyon, France
  3. Singapore
  4. Sydney
  5. Vienna
  6. Tokyo
  7. Porto, Portugal
  8. Helsinki
  9. Copenhagen
  10. Lisbon

There is also a list of best smaller cities. San Miguel de Allende in Mexico has topped the podium, but you won't be surprised to see two Italian cities in the top 10: Florence and Sienna.

San Miguel de Allende

The full list is:

  1. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
  2. Chiang Mai, Thailand
  3. Mérida, Mexico
  4. Monte Carlo, Monaco
  5. Valletta, Malta
  6. Salzburg, Austria
  7. Siena, Italy
  8. Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
  9. Florence
  10. Edinburgh

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Author: Cyrilexpat
French & British national
CEO Habilis Digital Ltd

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