Girls in bikini with surfboards on Australian beach
If you want to know the world, you have to travel. There are so many places to visit that it can often be difficult to choose where to go, but it can be a good idea to start by learning a bit about which countries are the happiest.
Every year the United Nations measures the quality of life for people around the world through various surveys and data analysis. Norway came out on top of a list of over 150 countries, ranked by independent experts on a variety of measures.
The factors considered include per capita gross domestic product, healthy years of life expectancy, trust and perceived freedom to make life choices.
Here are the 10 happiest countries:
Sweden is known to be the happiest country on the planet. They have some of the shortest work hours with the highest pay, as well as lots of free public services that keep their citizens happy.
Drottningholm Palace, Stockholm, Sweden
Älvsborgsbron, Göteborg, Sweden
Sydney Harbour Bridge, across Sydney Harbour, Sydney, Australia
Despite what people may think about the rugged countryside and the many dangerous animals, Australia is also high on the list of the happiest countries. Its low pollution levels and beautiful landscapes make it a place to visit.
Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
The Pinnacles, Nambung National Park, Western Australia
Uluru (Ayers Rock), Australia
White sand beach, East Coast, Australia
8. New Zealand
Sky Tower in Auckland, New Zealand
New Zealand offers stunning landscapes as well as welcoming people, making it another contender for happiest country in the world.
Auckland, New Zealand at night
Beach in New Zealand
Road in the beautiful New Zealand countryside
Lake Wanaka, New Zealand
Ottawa, Capital of Canada
Canada has a wealth of beauty to offer to its visitors and, with friendly locals, you will feel right at home when you visit. It is also one of the safest countries.
Parliament Hill, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Science World, Vancouver, Canada
Moraine Lake, Alberta, Canada
6. The Netherlands
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
This country is known for having the highest physical activity levels of any other country. Not only does this keep their citizens healthy, it also boosts their happiness.
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
The Hague, The Netherlands
Helsinki, Capital of Finland
Another northern country, Finland is a land of fairytales and beauty. Expect to spend a lot of time in their famous saunas!
As of 2015, Switzerland was ranked in the top two countries in which to live. Its citizens enjoy a safe environment with well paying jobs as well as free healthcare.
St. Moritz, Village in Switzerland
The Matterhorn, Zermatt, Switzerland
Waterfall at Oeschinensee, Oeschinen Lake, Bernese Oberland, Canton of Bern, Switzerland
Iceland offers its citizens free health care, free higher education and low income tax. Iceland has also been rated one of the most peaceful nations on Earth. When you visit Iceland, be sure the check out the Blue Lagoon, the country’s most famous geothermal spa.
Kirkjufell, mountain in Iceland
Denmark offers its citizens all manner of free public services and it has some of the highest wage rates in the world. The cities are kept spotless and it is a country of high activity levels, so be prepared to spend time outdoors.
Nyhavn, Copenhagen, Denmark
Canal in Nyhavn, Copenhagen, Denmark
Rosenborg Castle, Copenhagen, Denmark
The Little Mermaid, Copenhagen, Denmark
Norway is one of the most successful countries in the world, providing high standards of living for its citizens. You will be stunned by glaciers and fjords when you visit.