Sunday, February 1, 2009

Top Places in the World to Live

For the fourth year, France has earned International Living magazine’s top spot as best places to live in the world.

The retirement and relocation publication compared about 200 countries in nine categories including, cost of living, culture, economy, environment, freedom, health, infrastructure, safety and risk, and climate. Information was combined from official government sources, the World Health Organization, and The Economist. Then editors asked for opinions from knowledgeable people around the world.

France scored its high marks across the board, but its main appeal is the quality of its culture and leisure activities, says Managing Editor Laura Sheridan.

France is a buyer’s market for Americans who wish to buy property, Sheridan says. “Today, a euro is worth $1.31. Six months ago, a 100,000-euro house for sale in France would have cost you $159,000. Today, the same house would cost you $132,000. That’s a 17 percent drop in six months.”

Here’s International Living’s top 10 best places in the world to live and their overall scores out of a possible 100:

  1. France, 80
  2. Switzerland, 79
  3. United States, 78
  4. Luxembourg, 77
  5. Australia, 76
  6. Belgium, 75
  7. Italy, 74
  8. Germany, 73
  9. New Zealand, 72
  10. Denmark, 71

    Source: International Living (01/15/09)

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