New York is currently the best city in the world, according to Time Out.
The renowned guide’s 2024 World’s 50 Best Cities Index says it earned the coveted first place thanks to its “food and cultural scenes, its beauty and everything it offers to make residents happy.”
He adds that “New York is by far the city that most out-of-town urbanites would love to live in.”
The top five in the ranking are completed by Cape Town (second), Berlin (third), London (fourth) and Madrid (fifth).
The ranking is based on a global survey of thousands of city dwellers who were asked about the quality and affordability of their city’s food, culture and nightlife. This insight was combined with that of more than 100 well-travelled Time Out writers and editors based in cities around the world, who were surveyed to get their opinion on which cities are the most interesting right now. Scroll down to find out more about the top 10 and to see the full ranking…
1. New York
New York has been declared the best city in the world for 2024 by Time Out – it’s loved by locals, the guide says, and it’s the place city-dwellers around the world would choose if they could move to any other city.
“New York tops this year’s list of the world’s best cities for both its quality of life for locals and its global appeal for visitors,” says Time Out. “The city ranked highest among its residents across the board, from food and drink to nightlife, culture and beauty, and was also the place city-dwellers around the world would choose if they could move to any other city : 15 percent 100% of respondents in other cities stated this.’
The guide adds: “From can’t-miss exhibitions at the city’s galleries and world-class museums, including MoMA, to neighborhood community-led events like the Queens Night Market in Flushing, there’s always something to do in New York, by day or at night.”
2. Cape Town
Finalist Cape Town has “stunning beaches” and a “cultural scene ranked the highest in the world for quality.”
Cape Town takes the silver medal partly thanks to its good looks.
Time Out says: “From the heights of Table Mountain to the stunning coastal beaches, it’s not hard to see why everyone surveyed said Cape Town was beautiful.”
The South African city’s cultural and food scene also earned praise from respondents.
Time Out continues: ‘The city’s cultural scene is ranked highest in the world for quality, with plenty of studios, galleries and public events.
“The city (also) has an exciting, diverse and vibrant food scene that has evolved in recent years.”
Berlin, ranked number 3, has an “awesome” nightlife and is crisscrossed by convenient bike lanes.
“It’s well known that Berliners like to party,” says Time Out, “and the survey results back it up: Berlin’s nightlife scored an impressive 82 percent approval rating.”
‘This year marks the 20th anniversary of Monster Ronson’s Ichiban Karaoke, Berlin’s best-known karaoke bar, a great excuse for visitors to sing their favorite song at the top of their lungs.
“Those looking for daytime or outdoor activities can hop on a bike, take one of the many convenient bike lanes and head to one of the city’s green spaces, such as Tempelhof Field, a disused airport converted into a massive park “.
London, in fourth place, has numerous free museums and galleries, huge parks and legendary pubs.
Time Out reveals that respondents in London acknowledged that the city has a reputation for “misery and rain” but that, despite this, living in the city “makes them happy.”
Time Out says: ‘It must be because of the many wonderful things to do there, from the traditional to the new: many of London’s museums and galleries are free, the parks are huge and the pubs are legendary. After a few years of criticism for their flagging nightlife, London’s newest nightclubs are bigger and more cutting-edge than ever, with state-of-the-art sound systems and stellar programming; just check out Outernet, Drumsheds and Koko Electronic.
The ‘welcoming and lively’ Madrid completes the top five of the Time Out ranking
Madrid, says Time Out, “is a welcoming and lively city that stands out for its authenticity, its exceptional food (and drinking) scene and its vibrant culture.”
The guide adds: ‘In the last year alone, Salmon Guru was crowned one of the best cocktail bars in the world, David Muñoz has once again been voted the best chef on the planet and the Royal Collections Gallery was one of the museums more important. projects in Europe. In addition, many international concerts by artists such as Taylor Swift and Luis Miguel will take place in 2024, following the renovation of the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.’
6. Mexico City, Mexico
Time Out says Mexico City, which ranks sixth, “is at the forefront of a vibrant gastronomic revolution”
Time Out says that “Mexico City scored highly for liveability, with all local respondents declaring the city beautiful, most saying they were happy there and that it’s easy to make friends.”
Anything else? Yes, the food. Time Out says: “The city is at the forefront of a vibrant food revolution, from mushroom farming at Tencui, Japanese coffee at Panya and the best beef at Ahumados Pelican.”
Liverpool, in seventh place, scored 89 per cent for the affordability of its arts and culture scene.
As we reported, Liverpool is home to the best large hotel in England: the Titanic Hotel Liverpool.
However, the stellar accommodation is far from the only plus point.
Time Out reveals that Liverpool scored 89 per cent affordability for its arts and culture scene, “more than any other city on the list”.
The guide adds: “Still riding the wave of hosting Eurovision last year, there are plenty of musical events to look forward to in 2024, including ‘In The Park’, presented by much-loved local singer-songwriter Jamie Webster in collaboration with Cream Classical, where the Dance anthems from across the years will be accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra.Those who want to champion emerging gastronomic talent should try the small plates from Michelin-backed Belzan.
Tokyo, number 8, “innovative and dynamic”, is also a “world-class gastronomy center”
“Tokyo is without a doubt one of the most dynamic and innovative cities in the world,” declares Time Out, “and in 2024 it is not expected to slow down.”
The guide adds: ‘The new teamLab Borderless digital art museum is one of the most exciting cultural openings in the world this year, and the new headquarters in Azabudai Hills is home to a series of never-before-seen installations. The city is also a center for world-class gastronomy, with some of the world’s best restaurants now in Tokyo: Massimo Bottura’s Gucci Osteria, Michelin-starred Le Pristine Antwerp, and MAZ, sister to Best Central Restaurant in Peruvian world in 2023.
Rome (ninth) was declared “beautiful” by locals who responded to the Time Out survey
Rome will leave foodies salivating, and Time Out revealed that its residents rated the quality of its food scene highly.
And this year, the guide says, “this historically carnivorous city is embracing more plant-based restaurants to cater to changing palates.”
She adds: “Those looking for a plant-based meal should head to Buddy for a delicious vegan brunch, Grezzo for dairy-free ice cream and the new vegan bakery, Julietta.”
Any other points in favor? The architecture, of course. Time Out reveals: “Respondents agreed that their city was beautiful, which is not surprising when the majestic Colosseum, the intricately carved Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps and the Pantheon are the backdrop to their daily lives.”
10. Porto, Portugal
Porto, in tenth place, “was one of the cities with the highest score in romance”
Porto, it seems, will make your heart burst, as Time Out revealed that it “was one of the highest scoring cities for romance, with 82 per cent of locals saying it’s easy to find love in the city.”
The guide adds: ‘And what better way to enjoy a romantic date than with a glass of vinho in this wine capital?
‘Visitors can check into wine hotels like The Yeatman, enjoy a drink and snack at stylish wine bars like Genuíno, or learn all about the drink at World of Wine (WoW), while Gaia wineries like Sandeman , Cockburn’s and Cálem, are open for guided tours. Time Out Market Porto will also open this year in a building on the grounds of São Bento station, with a structure designed by renowned local architect Eduardo Souto de Moura.