Amsterdam ranked as best global city for a happy and healthy life

Amsterdam ranked as best global city for a happy and healthy life

A recent ranking has named Amsterdam as the best city in the world for living a happy and healthy life, with the Dutch capital beating the likes of Sydney and Stockholm to nab the top spot.

What makes a healthy city?

Lenstore analysed the health and happiness of 44 cities around the world, scoring each city across 10 healthy living metrics:

  • Obesity levels
  • Life expectancy
  • Sunshine hours
  • Air and water quality
  • Happiness levels
  • Average hours worked per week
  • Number of outdoor activities
  • Number of take-away options
  • Average cost of a monthly gym membership
  • Average cost of a bottle of water

Europe performed particularly well, claiming seven out of the top 10 spots. Meanwhile, both New York and Washington rank in the top five unhealthiest cities. Other cities that performed particularly poorly include Paris, London, and Johannesburg, with Mexico City claiming the bottom spot.

Living a happy and healthy life in Amsterdam

Amsterdam has once again performed well in a global city ranking, nabbing the top spot. The news is perhaps not all that surprising, considering the city’s bike-friendly - nay, bike-crazy - reputation. However, this isn’t the only factor that contributed to the city’s overall ranking. 

The Dutch capital may only offer a limited number of sunshine hours - only 1.858 hours per year, one of the lowest figures in the top 10 - and a relatively high cost for a monthly gym membership (around 39 euros compared to just 29 euros in Vienna) and a bottle of water (2,20 euros versus only 90 cents in Fukuoka). But according to the ranking, the city definitely has its perks. 

The Netherlands’ obesity levels are one of the lowest in the top 10 (20,4 percent), while the average life expectancy is pretty high (81,2 years) - both factors with contributed to Amsterdam’s ranking, and the country also performs well when it comes to happiness levels. Narrowing it down to Amsterdam, the city also has a relatively low average for hours worked per week (1.434) and a high number of outdoor activities on offer for the local population (422).

The top 10 healthy and happy cities 

According to Lenstore’s ranking, the 10 healthiest and happiest cities to live in are:

  1. Amsterdam
  2. Sydney
  3. Vienna
  4. Stockholm
  5. Copenhagen
  6. Helsinki
  7. Fukuoka
  8. Berlin
  9. Barcelona
  10. Vancouver

For more information about the ranking, visit Lenstore’s website.

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

Read more



Leave a comment

MaxG2 12:13 | 3 March 2021

Just fix the terrible inhumane climate. It can't be in top 10 with it, no way.