Several years ago out of curiosity, I wondered what the healthiest cities in the world were. I came across an article highlighting 25 of the healthiest cities in the world and was intrigued to learn that about 13 of them were in Asia. After reflecting for months it brought me to this top 5 list which again is the result of ongoing curiosity into the world’s healthiest cities. The list was compiled as a result of extensive research regarding four key indicators: air quality, healthcare availability, personal well being, and overall ranking as the world’s best cities.

5. London, England

Group of young entrepreneurs walking along South Bank in London
Group of young entrepreneurs walking along South Bank in London

According to the research performed, London ranks No. 1 overall as the Best City in the world, and also 17th in air quality. As a side note, London is also said to have taken over New York City, USA as the “financial capital” of the world, which is largely how it became the No. 1 best city. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about its health and well-being standards. London remained outside the Top 10 when it came to personal health and healthcare. Perhaps with the economic infrastructure in place there can be more invested in health services, although it seems unlikely, when you consider what impact the pandemic of 2020 has had on London, and that’s not even considering the Brexit controversy.

4. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Young entrepreneur standing on balcony in Dubai
Young entrepreneur standing on balcony in Dubai

Dubai, UAE was found to be 4th in air quality, and 6th on the list of best cities in the world. What stands out to me is the cityscape around the area, followed by the modest culture. Despite their high ranking it must be noted that due to the current pandemic, the city has had its struggles reaching moderate conditions. Aside from this, Dubai still maintains a world-class botanical outlook featuring open-air gardens, a nature-inspired shopping mall, and the ability to enjoy those healthy city views. Once Dubai can shift their attention to providing excellent healthcare and invest in the overall well-being of their residents, they can climb several spots and compete as a No. 1 overall healthy city.

3. Paris, France

Entrepreneur standing in front of Eiffel Tower in Paris
Entrepreneur standing in front of Eiffel Tower in Paris

Paris ranks as my third choice overall due to it being the No. 3 best city, along with France in general ranking No. 1 in healthcare. Adding to that, similar to London, Paris has the infrastructure in place to compete for No. 1 overall, if only it can prioritize air quality and personal well-being. Like Dubai, Paris offers a very refreshing cityscape and combined with the emphasis on healthcare, encourages more tourists from around the world to enjoy its outdoor elements. The economic activity generated within Paris will almost always make it competitive enough to become the No. 1 overall healthiest city in the world.

2. Tokyo, Japan

Entrepreneur looking at the Tokyo city view
Entrepreneur looking at the Tokyo city view

I believe this city could be No. 1 in any ranking encompassing the world’s healthiest cities. Tokyo ranks 8th in air quality, stands as the 4th best city in the world and is seated within Japan which has the 10th best healthcare system, according to research. Tokyo is a very vibrant city and offers some very beneficial advantages. It has some of the best neighborhoods and offers a very therapeutic infrastructure. It is easily described as one of the most livable cities in the world and is constantly changing and seeking innovation to make its economy better. This city would absolutely be my No. 1 overall, if it wasn’t for the No. 1 healthiest city, overall.

1. Singapore

Silhouette of entrepreneur against illuminated urban skyline, Singapore at dusk.

Singapore is one of the many treasures we have the opportunity to access in the world today. It ranks 7th in healthcare, is the 7th best city in the world, ranked 10th in personal health and well-being and stakes a claim across many healthy city lists as an economic powerhouse. Singapore will be able to generate better health conditions not just for its residents, but for all residents around the world who wish to experience it. This is by far the healthiest city in the world.

It does go without saying the current COVID-19 crisis impacts some of these rankings, but not all of them. Also it is worth acknowledging none of these cities are in North America. In contrast, European cities are present and emerging daily as we move forward into the future. Whether the world will be better or healthier after the pandemic remains to be seen, however one thing I can guarantee: Tokyo and Singapore will linger among the Top 5 healthiest cities in the world, for years to come.


Air Quality Index
Best Cities in the World
Personal Well-being

What do you think of our list of the healthiest cities in the world? Let us know down in the comments.

This article originally published on GREY Journal.