Nomad’s Pick: The Five Most Livable Cities 2014 Edition

I just wrote a post on the places I would want to live…for sentimental reasons, seasonally.

But they wouldn’t necessarily be the first on my list for most livable.

However, the following places we’ve been from a purely logistical and comfortable point of view, have been places I’ve thought would be a great place to live and raise a family.

The list will probably grow as we visit more places. For now, here’s the top five list:

Runner-up: Victoria, Canada


I spent a day here so it’s just a stab in the dark, but I bet this is the most livable part of Canada. Best weather by far, short trip away from Vancouver or Seattle, good transportation, small town feel, friendly people. Too short of a trip to know for sure but that’s the impression I got.

5) New York City, USA

nyc luke

This probably shouldn’t make the list since I have never been here during winter and I think I would SUFFER. But it has such good public transportation and so many amazing indoor activities I think I could still be happy even during the winter. The food scene here—unreal. Historical gems to discover—countless. Culture—unmatched anywhere. We would have plenty of visitors I think. We like visitors. And we’ve visited NYC several times but we haven’t even gotten started really. The neighborhoods and music and theater and museums and shopping—this city is one of the only two alpha ++ global cities along with London, and therefore has something for everybody.


4) Barcelona, Spain


above barcelona


Can you see the Sagrada Familia in the picture? Big city, beaches, friendly people, perfect weather, transportation hub, architecture and more. What’s not to like?

3) Port Vila, Vanuatu

baby cuddles

Here’s the wild card. Certainly most people don’t have this city on their radars. But the people here make life so friendly and kind, the transportation is so convenient, and there are lots of adventure activities. It’s never cold. It’s a wholesome, family-oriented place. And it’s still undiscovered with nearly 80 different islands to explore. What is lacking here is decent grocery stores or cheap eateries. I’d have to get real familiar with market-style shopping if we were to stay here.

2) Mexico City, Mexico

night mex city

We lived here already for longer than anywhere else in our marriage and we still never got bored. The museums, food, parties, and people make this place feel vibrant at all times of the year. We have good friends here and its proximity to the States makes it great to have family come visit.

1) Istanbul, Turkey


This one gets the number one spot because it blows just about every category out of the water. People? Most hospitable of any culture you’ll ever meet. Food? We could eat burek and ayran every day. And pickles. Lots and lots of pickled vegetables of every kind. Location? Perfect to visit Europe, the Middle East, AND Central Asia. Africa’s not too far away either. Transportation? No car necessary. Weather? It doesn’t get cold enough to snow. It’s not polluted and it’s beautiful. There is a small problem in the city-and that’s as a Western woman, it’s necessary to take some precautions. Head covering and modest clothing are probably preferable. This small token effort would be worth it though.


Kalli Hiller

Article by Kalli Hiller

Kalli Hiller is a voluntary vagabond who, with her husband Jacob, has traveled full time for the last eight years.

Kalli has written 371 awesome articles for us.

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