Lonely Planet Writer

Are these the world's most liveable cities?

The Economist Group's 'Intelligence Unit' has just released its 'liveability' ratings for the world's cities. So who's making the grade in 2011 for the city equivalent of the comfiest couch in the room?

Here's how the top 10 looks:

  1. Vancouver
  2. Melbourne
  3. Vienna
  4. Toronto
  5. Calgary
  6. Helsinki
  7. Sydney
  8. Perth
  9. Adelaide
  10. Auckland

The rankings are based on five broad categories of assessment: stability; healthcare; culture and environment; education; and infrastructure.

And it looks like Canada, which didn't rate well in Lonely Planet's survey for the world's sexiest accents, has liveability as one of their biggest allures. Canada: the country you'd want to settle down with.

But does being liveable make a city the most visitable? Do these reliable nice guys make you hunger for the thrill of the bad ones? What do you think? Do you think The Economist got it right?