Is there a heaven on Earth? Probably not but here is the list of the world’s top 30 best countries that are almost as good as that. There are many factors that you will have to consider before deciding to move to a country like the weather, cost of living, the people, if it’s good for kids to be raised in and a million more things like that. And it can get tedious to research all that stuff and make a decision. So we have done all the work for you and here is a concise list of the best countries in the world.
Currency: Turkish Lira (TRY)
Average income per person: $22,021
Average life expectancy: 74.57 years
The Turks are very laid back. If you want a no hurry lifestyle, the Turks won’t disappoint you. And if you are worried about language as a barrier, don’t. English is widely spoken. The weather in Turkey is perfect to match with all your moods. This makes outdoor living very popular in Turkey. The Turks are also known for eating healthy food. Their seafood is freshly caught and so their restaurants serve food that is free from preservatives and the like. And also, since fast food and microwaved meals are very expensive, they tend to cook their food with fresh produce.
Population: 263.51 million
Currency: Indonesian Rupiah
Average income per person: $11,699
Average life expectancy: 72.45 years
Indonesians have their own customs and practices that you may be required to follow. Disrespect to this may be taken as an offense. Which obviously means that the people are conservative. Their dress code is a little modest and so if you are from the west, this might take some getting used to. Despite all this, they have a very vibrant nightlife but you should know where to look for it. People from the west, especially women may need some time to get used to the gender inequality. All stereotypes centered around women can be found here. But you will find that living here will be easy on the pocket. Food is good yet cheap (alcohol excluded). Taxis are ridiculously cheap. Mobile phone and broadband tariffs are very affordable too. Pretty cool right?
Average income per person: $44,881
Average life expectancy: 80.88 years
Chocolates. Belgium produces the best chocolates in the world. Belgium has a rich and diverse culture. Owing to this, there are a lot of languages being spoken in Belgium. In a city like Brussels, people will hear colleagues of a company speak in two or three different languages. But this rich culture and tradition is also accompanied by the cultural sensitivity of the locals. One huge advantage is that in a not so big country like Belgium, you can choose to live in the country but don’t have to go through the ordeal of a very long commute to get to work in the city. And you can also save on accommodation by choosing to live in the suburbs. Also the country has excellent public transport infrastructure. Belgium boasts excellent cuisine and dining. Also, they are famous for offering the finest beers in the world. So you will definitely gain a pound or two within a couple weeks of moving here.
Average income per person: $15,095
Average life expectancy: 75.41 years
The most populated country in the world has held onto that status for a really long time now. Let’s see why. It is a wonderful place to start your career. Talent and hard work is appreciated and recognized. Language may be a barrier but there will be plenty of opportunities for you to learn mandarin everyday and it would do you good to not let go of those opportunities. You also get excellent Chinese, Japanese and Korean food 24*7. The cost of living is not too much and you will benefit if you learn to handle money and finances like the Chinese because a majority of them don’t spend extravagantly. And the general attitude and behavior of the people will take some getting used to, especially if you are from the west. And also you will have to incorporate specific habits to deal with the pollution.
Average income per person: $36,143
Average life expectancy: 81.57 years
The Spanish will instantly love you if you even take the slightest effort to speak their language. And it is not that hard to learn. The Spanish have a zest for life and live everyday like it’s their last. Spain also has amazing beaches and scenic beauty. The weather in Spain is romantic throughout the year. The local delicacies are extremely tasty. Their education and health care systems are also good. It is known to be one of the best countries to settle down in after retirement.
Average income per person: $47,856
Average life expectancy: 81.39 years
Austria is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. It is the land of Mozart. And if you have watched ‘Sound of Music’ you would know what I’m talking about. And this is extremely well maintained. Children in Austria are encouraged to choose their own careers usually in the field of arts and pursue them. Most Austrians speak English. Locals enjoy operas and the Salzburg Festival is most looked forward to. All citizens receive publicly funded health care, which is really good, but they can also purchase a supplementary private health insurance. Austria empowers their women with equality and freedom. Their public transportation system is timely and safe. Austrian wine is also known all over the world. It is also known for its black coffee.
Average income per person: 36,191
Average life expectancy: 82.12 years
Firstly, if you don’t know Italian, learn it. A majority of the Italians are not fluent in English and they are too proud of their language to make an effort to learn it. Their culture and heritage is extremely rich and they have preserved it very well. How would it be to cross the Colosseum on your way to work? The apartments and houses are well maintained and neat. So it should not be that hard to find one that suits your liking. Their education system s very good and public education is free. Their public transportation system is cheap, safe and reliable. They have the most amazing health care system. The country has the best public hospitals and it is all free or ridiculously cheap for EU citizens. And they are the partying kind and have a buzzing nightlife. Italy also has amazing supermarkets. Even the smallest supermarket in the remotest town will have very fresh produce. And if you have watched Julia Roberts’ ‘Eat Pray Love’, I don’t have to tell you about Italian cuisine. But for others – Pizza and Pasta.
Average income per person: $42,654
Average life expectancy: 80.77 years
The first thing you should probably know is that language is not a barrier. Everyone speaks English. They offer very good quality and affordable education. The standard of living is very high. But you can easily make ends meet if you find yourself a job. And finding one of those is not hard even if you are a foreigner. The Finnish welcome everyone and don’t hesitate to give appreciation where it is due. They are not a very noisy crowd though. They usually will not initiate conversations with strangers but once the ice is broken, you will be surprised to see how nice and friendly they are. They have a very good health care system as well. The Finnish government has many environment friendly policies in place to maintain and preserve its nature. It might also interest you to know that according to Reader’s Digest, Helsinki is one of the most honest cities in the world.
Currency: Yen (JPY)
Average income per person: $40,090
Average life expectancy: 84.74 years
Japan is full of convenience stores where you can find anything and everything that you may need. They are always customer friendly. Japanese food is great. It is healthy and it tastes great. It is so easy to find a teachers’ job in Japan. They are always willing to learn English and there is always a shortage of English professors. But you should know that the Japanese are workaholics and perfectionists. If you are European, this may need some getting used to. Japanese public transport is one of the best in the world. It makes it so much easier to travel around the country. The health care system in Japan is fantastic. This and their food is probably why many of them live to see a hundred. The crime rate is also very low. It is also a beautiful country to live in. Also, visit Mount Fuji while you are there.
Average income per person: $50,503
Average life expectancy: 80.68 years
Irish folklore is known all over the world for their fairies, leprechauns and castles. If not a castle, finding a beautiful home in Ireland will not be difficult as they have something to suit every budget. It’s excellent location makes visiting other countries very easy. Barcelona is two hours away, Rome is three hours away and the UK is just a mere 45 minutes away. The weather can be pretty unpredictable but it rarely ever snows in Ireland. Also, by law, employees are required to avail their 20 days of compulsory leave every year. If you are lucky enough, your employer may even award extra vacation days to you. The Irish have excellent work-life balance. Also, Ireland is very safe. Guns are illegal. But if you own a farm, you can have a farm kind of gun. The homicide rate is 1.1 per 1000 people. The public healthcare system is very good is funded with general taxes. The government also offers excellent public transport. And rental cars are pretty cheap. But fuel is a little expensive. Ireland is known for their music. And also, if you don’t already know, Ireland is full of pubs. So if you are the partying kind, go pack your bags already.
Capital: Luxembourg City
Average income per person: $100,991
Average life expectancy: 82.17 years
Luxembourg is home to the European headquarters of Amazon, Ferrero and Skype. So obviously the economic state of affairs in Luxembourg is very good. The political and financial scenario is also really good. This is pretty evident from the high per capita income. Luxembourg is also a picturesque location but not many people know about this country so it doesn’t invite a lot of tourists. The only disadvantage is that Luxembourg is covered by land on all sides and so if you are a sea lover or love the beach, this may not be the place for you.
Currency: Icelandic krona (ISK)
Average income per person: $50,500
Average life expectancy: 82.97 years
First of all, Iceland is not icy. First inhabitants named it Iceland to fool foreigners and keep them from settling down there. And this actually worked and the population of Iceland is very less. The country has exquisite beauty and many movies are shot here. Many episodes of the famous TV series ‘Game Of Thrones’ were shot here. Iceland is very safe and has the smallest army in the world. But the immigration regulations are pretty solid so it is not easy to move there. And the people are very reserved. They don’t make small talk with strangers and they don’t even get acquainted with their neighbors.
Currency: Russian ruble (RUB)
Average income per person: $25,185
Average life expectancy: 70.47 years
You will find homes built during the Stalin era with high ceilings and thick walls. Living in these kind of houses will make you feel like you are in a history book. But since the population is very high, there is very high demand for houses. The buildings here have interesting architecture and there are many skyscrapers. You can have a very active social life in Russia. There are so many activities that you can indulge in. There are also very nice museums, theatres and art galleries. Moscow is also becoming more children friendly with more planetariums and circuses that will keep children occupied. There are also many international schools that offer very high quality education. Winter is a good time for ice-skating and riverside beaches can be taken advantage of in the summer. The crime rates are fairly low. Russia is known the world over for their excellent quality of medical services. And they are working on making medicare more accessible to everyone. The public transport system is also very nice but it can get a little crowded during peak hours.
Capital: Kuala Lumpur
Currency: Ringgit (RM)
Average income per person: $28,490
Average life expectancy: 74.75 years
Malaysia has a rich cultural diversity. The people are very friendly and welcoming. The buildings are modern and spacious. Driving is preferred because petrol is cheap (it is locally sourced). But anything that has to be imported is very expensive. Especially cars. The import tax is extremely high. Wine and beer is also very expensive here. The health care system is good but most of their doctors are educated in western countries. The public transport is very good and taxis are very cheap. The food here is also very good. Global cuisine is easily available.
Currency: Riyal (QAR)
Average income per person: $145,894
Average life expectancy: 78.59 years
The population in Qatar is not too high and it is easy for newcomers to make friends. You will find it easy to find a community and fit in. The houses in Qatar are extremely spacious and well proportioned. And new houses are constantly being built to keep up with the demand. Heavy government investment in infrastructure has created an abundance of job opportunities in Qatar. It is also considered one of the best countries for career-oriented women. . Jobs in Qatar pay very highly. Qatar has excellent museums and many cultural events are conducted. But the summers in Qatar are unbearable. People prefer to not even step out of their houses. And the work culture is very relaxed. The country has very low crime rates. The quality of education in Qatar is very good but tuition can be pretty expensive. Health insurance system is pretty good and the hospitals are modern and well equipped. And petrol is very cheap in Qatar.
Average income per person: $41,181
Average life expectancy: 81.75 years
Paris. Fashion capital of the world. This is the hub of all major labels in the world. Everything from Vera Wang to Chanel is in this country. Education in France is very good. It is based on a national curriculum that is compulsory through ages 6 to 16. Many kids attend pre-school before that and go on to pursue higher education after the age of 16. The Labor laws in France limit working hours to 35 hours per week and entitle employees to 30 days of paid vacation every year. The French have a very slow paced lifestyle. They love their wine and women. They appreciate the arts and theatre. The museums in France are extremely popular all over the globe. The transportation system is very accessible and convenient. And the food here is amazing. The French are proud of their cuisine. You will find so many amazing restaurants that offer the best food in the world.
Currency: Singapore Dollar (SGD)
Average income per person: $87,082
Average life expectancy: 84.68 years
Singapore has one of the most educated citizens in the world. And they also offer high paying jobs. Singapore has a very good education system and has some of the best universities in the world. The public transport is great and trains are pretty cheap. Taxis are also very affordable. And this is preferred as cars are very expensive here. And this is preferred as cars are very expensive here. This is because you will have to pay for a certificate of entitlement, and a bunch of duties and taxes. Singapore is also a very safe place to live in. The crime rate is very low. It has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to drugs. It is also very easy to make friends. Health care in Singapore is good and reasonably priced even if you don’t have insurance. Singapore is very hot, humid and rainy throughout the year.
Currency: Pound Sterling (GBP)
Average income per person: $42,514
Average life expectancy: 80.54 years
UK has some of the best parks in the world. The public transport system is one of the best in the world and so you can go to these parks whenever you want. It is a country that has a very rich history. The sun never sets in the British Empire. So there are so many palaces and castles all over the country. Harry Potter’s most famous locations were shot in Oxford. If you want to eat at the great hall in Hogwarts, pay this place a visit. The museums are free to visit. The theatre and music scene is awesome. If you are someone who appreciates the arts, you will appreciate the UK. Also, the schools and universities in the UK are among the best in the world. There are plenty of CCTV cameras all over the place and this makes it a very safe place to live in. And then you will have plenty of opportunities to see the Queen.
Population: 16.8 million
Average income per person: $50,793
Average life expectancy: 81.23 years
Netherlands is one of the most peaceful countries in the world. Dutch accommodation is of a very high standard with high ceilings and large windows. You will have nothing to complain about. But the demand for apartments is always very high. There are so many cultural events that happen throughout the year like the summer music festival. There are also plenty of cafes, galleries and museums to visit. The crime rates are very low. The culture is very inclusive and people are very welcoming of newcomers. Joining a new school, university and work place should not be a problem at all. The health care service is very efficient and the doctors speak very fluent English. And you should know that learning Dutch is not easy but you can survive with English. The education system is also very good. Also, the Dutch love to travel. And they always prefer taking their bicycles for any journey less than 5 miles. The Dutch advocate equality among citizens. There is no discrimination whatsoever.
Capital: Washington D.C
Currency: Dollar (USD)
Average income per person: $57,220
Average life expectancy: 79.68 years
Americans have freedom. Newspapers can print whatever they believe in and no one will kick their doors down even if they criticize the President. Other than freedom of the press, the people also enjoy freedom of speech and expression. Politically speaking, there is very little corruption in the US. America is a country of many cultures. People in the US all have diverse stories. Being American is what brings them together. And you don’t have to give up on any other identity to be American. Also, the USA is a very wealthy country. The economy is very stable and the US has the capability to bounce back from a recession. It is called the land of opportunities. Everything that you may want and need is readily available and accessible. There is also an abundance of land and other natural resources. The geographical and climatic diversity is very vast. The government offers public education to everyone. But university education is a little expensive. Health insurance is pretty great and allows access to excellent health care services. The overall standard of living is very high. Also they have the best army and offer the best military protection in the world. Oh and this is the world’s most powerful country lead by the most powerful man on the planet.
Average income per person: $20,429
Average life expectancy: 79.16 years
It may interest you to note that Portugal is known to be one of the most peace-loving countries in the world. Portuguese are one of the friendliest people. There will be no discrimination based on color, religion or creed. The weather is great but the summers can get pretty hot. Especially between July and August. And winters can get very wet. The western and southern areas of the country are lined with beaches that are white and clean. So there’s plenty of space for you to get that perfect tan in the summer. One interesting observation is that Portuguese enjoy speaking in English with people from other countries. And kids also learn English in school. But Portuguese can be a difficult language to learn. Proper, well-maintained roads connect Portugal but the tolls tend to be high. It is also one of the most developed countries in the world. And the Portuguese worship Ronaldo.
Currency: Danish Krone (DKK)
Average income per person: $46,602
Average life expectancy: 79.25 years
If you love the beach and the sand, you will love Denmark. It’s an archipelago made of more than 100 islands and no place in Denmark is more than 30 miles from the ocean. There are numerous culinary delights to explore in this small country. If you are a foodie, Denmark is sure to satisfy your toughest taste buds. The employment rate in Denmark is 75%. It is without a doubt, the highest in Europe. Jobs are good and easy to find. The gender wage gap is 7.8%. This is one of the least in the world (to compare, it is around 19% in the US). Also, Denmark is an extremely green and environment friendly country. 50% of commuters ride their bikes to and from work. The locals welcome immigrants with open arms. And they love and are proud of their royal family and happily support their reign.
Currency: Swedish Krona (SEK)
Average income per person: $49,678
Average life expectancy: 81.98 years
People take good care of their properties and so if you are looking to rent or buy a property, you can definitely find it beautifully furnished and maintained. Stockholmers love the outdoors and wait for summer so that they can organize barbeques, sporting events and visits to the countryside. They don’t miss an opportunity to soak up the sun. The winters are long though. But this is when they go ice skating, hiking in the snow, skiing and sledding. And you should know that in December there are only six hours of daylight. Swedes know how to work while they work and play while they play. They are known the world over for maintaining excellent work-life balance. And the country is also very safe and has very low crime rates. The public school system in Sweden is excellent and is free all the way through to university. Their bilingual (English and Swedish) schools are also pretty great. So kids are fluent in English. You should note that home schooling is illegal in Sweden. There are many commendable universities in the country. The tuition for non-EU students is a little high but still lesser than other European countries. The health care system is also pretty good and the health insurance covers almost everything. You can be assured that if you have to pay for a consultation it will be quite less.
Average income per person: $47,033
Average life expectancy: 80.57 years
Cars. Germans are known for their brains and are really advanced in the field of engineering. As Germany is in the center of Europe, it is very easy to travel to the rest of Europe. The public transport service offered is excellent. And the connections are good. The health care system is amazing. Almost everything is included in your local insurance. Oktoberfest. Germans are really active and know how to have fun. There are umpteen fun fairs, carnivals and outdoor activities organized during spring and summer. And there is some good news for students. All universities are free for residents and foreign students and over 96% of the population has at least a secondary education. Another amazing thing is, they love beer and so, you can drink beer anytime, anywhere. Oh and football drives Germans crazy.
Currency: Australian Dollar (AUD)
Average income per person: $48,806
With many world-class universities, Australia is famous for their education system. Each state and territory is responsible for managing their system of education but this should be in accordance with the national standards implemented in 2014. The government also offers a lot of student-friendly loan programs for those students willing and eligible for a university education. Their health care system is also commendable. Life expectancy is 82.15 years on average. Also, Australia is the sixth largest country in the world but has very limited population. So if you are not the kind of person who likes crowded cities and towns, then this one is for you. It has a population density of only 2.8 people per Kilometer Square. The cost of living is not too much and immigrants are welcome.
Currency: Canadian Dollar (CAD)
Average income per person: $46,199
Thanks to Justin Trudeau, Canada is welcoming people from all over the world with open arms. And it would do you good to accept this invitation. Canada provides world-class dental and medical care. And no, it’s not expensive. It’s mostly free. Even without health insurance, medical care will not cost you much. Also, they have an excellent post-secondary education system. And average tuition is only $5974, which is less than US, Japan and Australia. Multiculturism is encouraged in Canada. There will be no disparity between races or people from different cultural backgrounds. The people of Canada are also very humble and friendly. Canada is also very safe to live in. But keep in mind that winters in Canada are extremely cold.
Currency: New Zealand Dollar (NZD)
Average income per person: $36,950
If you are a movie freak, you would already know that many iconic movies like Avatar and The Lord Of The Rings were shot in New Zealand. This is because New Zealand is a beautiful island country where you can capture beautiful hills, aesthetic valleys and the endless Pacific in one shot. Apart from a scenic beauty, NZ is also known for being the home of happy citizens. The press in NZ enjoys utmost freedom. The health care system is also very good. Average life expectancy is 81.05 years. And they provide high quality education that is not very expensive. The people have an amazing work-life balance and have a laid back attitude about life. This is one of the ideal places to live in this year.
Capital: Bern (de facto)
Currency: Swiss Francs (CHF)
Average income per person: $59,150
The breath taking scenic beauty of Switzerland is the reason the country is called heaven on Earth. The Swiss Government is known to be the most transparent government in the world. They also have favorable policies for immigrants. The citizens of Switzerland are also among the wealthiest in the world. Switzerland has a 9-year compulsory schooling policy and offers free primary education, which is compulsory in public schools. And they also claim to have one of the best education systems in the world. And they are known for their excellent health care system. They have a relatively low risk for diseases like malaria, HIV and tuberculosis. And they live up to 82.5 years on an average. So if you have a kid to raise and want to live to see your grandchildren, look no further.
P.S. It is also one of the world’s best honeymoon destinations.
Currency: Norwegian Krone (NOK)
Average income per person: $67,610
Average life expectancy: 81.7 years
Two words. Aurora Borealis. Aka Northern Lights. If you haven’t heard of them, google it right now. This phenomenon is best visible from the Northern parts of Norway. Wouldn’t it be amazing to witness this amazing miracle of nature everyday? Also, Norway is often described as the happiest country to live in. Norwegians are the happy-go-lucky partying kind. And you’ll be filled with energy and positivity. And these happy people live for a very long time. Norway is also considered the third most gender equal country in the world. Norwegians are very proud of their homes. The home décor will look like they are right out from the pages of Ikea. And a lot of rental houses come with this exquisite furniture, which the owners will willingly replace should you not like them. And the environment is clean. The average number of years of schooling is 12.7 years, which is also high. The parental leave policies are also very lenient. And the working hours are only 7.5 hours. Also, the Norwegian government has banned deforestation. It really is a green country to live in. That’s pretty great isn’t?
Average income per person: $78,700
Average life expectancy: 89.52 years (Highest)
This is going to sound unbelievable. Income tax was abolished in Monaco in 1869. Let that sink in. Because it’s too good to be true, there’s one exception. French nationals residing in Monaco have to pay personal income tax which is calculated in accordance with the principles of French tax law. The health care system is obviously world class because people would not otherwise touch ninety years on an average. And this world-class health care is very affordable. This country is very safe. The crime rate is very low. There are many excellent schools in Monaco (both English-speaking and French). The weather is perfect. The winters are mild and the summers are glorious and hot. And not to mention, this country is beautiful. And it is a short drive away from Cannes, Saint Tropez and Portofino. Packed your bags yet?