Vienna has been named the world's most liveable city for the two years running in the annual Economist Intelligence Unit’s global livability index.

Vienna city view
Vienna has been declared the world's most liveable city for the second year in a row ©ver0nicka/Shutterstock

The Austrian capital's rich cultural offerings, affordable healthcare system, well-developed public transport network and the safe streets has kept Melbourne away from the top spot for the second year in a row. The index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit looks at five factors to determine which city is the most liveable. Vienna got "near-perfect, exceptional scores" across four of the five categories which include stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education and infrastructure.

Melbourne
Melbourne is famous for its cafe culture so it's no surprise that it ranked highly in the culture category ©TK Kurikawa/Shutterstock

Melbourne, which always ranks highly, narrowly missed out on the top spot, scoring 98.4 against Vienna's 99.1. It bagged a maximum rating of 100 points for healthcare, education and infrastructure, 98.6 for culture and environment and 95 points for "stability" - which covers crime and the threat of terror. Its rival to the north, Sydney, also fared well by ranking a very close third with 98.1 points. The Economist says Sydney's rise from fifth place in 2018 to this year's third is mainly attributed to its "increased focus on combating and mitigating the impacts of climate change, as outlined by the city’s 'Sustainable Sydney 2030' strategy." 

Manly beach on a sunny summer day
Sydney scored highly in the environment category ©Taras Vyshnya/Shutterstock

Osaka and Calgary make up the top five in a list that is dominated by Australian, Canadian and Japanese cities. Copenhagen was the only other European city to make the top 10, while London, Paris and New York, which are known for their culture and incredible culinary scenes, saw their points decrease due to "higher crime rates and ropey infrastructure" according to the Economist. They were ranked 48th, 26th and 58th respectively. The city which made the biggest jump in the list is the Puerto Rican capital of San Juan. It climbed 20 places to 69th this year after investing heavily in healthcare and infrastructure following the damage wrought by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

Damascus, in Syria, was judged the world's least liveable city, followed by Lagos, Nigeria, and Dhaka, Bangladesh

The world’s most liveable cities 2019

1. Vienna, Austria
2. Melbourne, Australia
3. Sydney, Australia
4. Osaka, Japan
5. Calgary, Canada
6. Vancouver, Canada
7. Toronto, Canada
7. Tokyo, Japan
9. Copenhagen, Denmark
10. Adelaide, Australia

The world’s least liveable cities 2019

1. Damascus, Syria
2. Lagos, Nigeria
3. Dhaka, Bangladesh
4. Tripoli, Libya
5. Karachi, Pakistan
6. Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
7. Harare, Zimbabwe
8. Douala, Cameroon
9. Algiers, Algeria
10. Caracas, Venezuela

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