11 Happiest Countries Where People Live Their Best Lives

While there are lists including the world’s most expensive countries, the poorest countries to live in, and the most beautiful countries, there also exists a list that is much more worthy of mention – the list of happiest countries in the world; a list of countries whose prosperity is judged on the social and emotional aspects of its population rather than its economic metrics.

Read on to know the 11 happiest countries in the world as per the World Happiness Report. The happiness of the citizens is measured after monitoring the performance in six categories, including GDP, social support, healthy life expectancy, freedom to make one’s own choices, internal and external corruption levels, and benevolence of the population.


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Finland has been topping the list for six consecutive years with a happiness score of 7.8. Unlike many nations of the world, the government of Finland believes in people-first. The Finlanders have the best-in-class healthcare, excellent education, and strong community support. They are also free to make their own choices. These are a few factors that contribute to the overall happiness of the country’s population.


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The next country to follow Finland is another Scandinavian country with a happiness score of 7.5. Trust is an integral part of Danish culture and society and an important factor contributing to its happiness. People are generally trusting and trustworthy at personal, professional, and government levels.


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This island nation experiences a strong sense of community and a social support system. Another important factor related to the happiness of Icelandic people is their culture of acceptance and equality.


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Israel ranks fourth on the list of happiest countries in the world. Israelis credit their unusual sense of well-being to strong community support; the country is driven by family and community. Apart from their community connections, Israelis also enjoy good health, generosity of the citizens, absence of corruption, and satisfactory income levels.


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The country of windmills, tulips, and canals is consistently ranked as one of the happiest countries in the world owing to a great healthcare system, good work-life balance, low levels of income disparity, a strong sense of social equality, and safety and security among other things.


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At 7.4 on the happiness score, Sweden is another North European country to top the list. Like all other Nordic countries, Sweden enjoys an excellent healthcare system, a strong economy, high life expectancy, excellent social support, and a good quality of life.


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It’s surprising how so many Scandinavian countries find themselves on the list of happiest countries despite having a long, cold, and dark winter. It goes to show it has little to do with the weather conditions. Norway is happy because its citizens feel safe and secure. They have job security and excellent workplace conditions. Norway offers positive social spaces where people interact freely and support one another. Again, strong community support is the key to happiness.


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That Switzerland is one of the toppers on the list of happiest countries in the world should come as a surprise to no one. Switzerland has a score almost the same as Denmark. A strong sense of community prevails in the country, and it is generally perceived as a safe and clean country. Furthermore, it features seventh on the list of the top 10 least corrupt countries in the world after Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, etc.


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With a 7.2 happiness score, Luxembourg is another European country to join the list of happiest countries. Luxembourg citizens are happy because of its high GDP per capita, low levels of corruption, and political stability. Luxembourg citizens also enjoy good healthcare, job security, cultural tolerance, quality education, and high levels of personal freedom.

New Zealand

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One of the few non-European countries to join the list of happiest countries is New Zealand with a happiness score of 7.12. The country with its vast and beautiful natural landscapes is also known for its friendly and welcoming people. People enjoy personal freedom and citizen-friendly policies like same-sex marriage, abortion rights, and strict gun control laws.


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Australia is ranked 12th (after Austria) and is considered one of the happiest nations in the world. Happiness is related to how people think things are with their personal and professional lives, family, children, and health. Australia attributes the happiness of its citizens to various reasons, including a high standard of living, quality education, and an accessible and affordable healthcare system. These factors lead to a good work-life balance for its citizens.

The United States may not be in the top 10 happiest countries, but it still made the list while Bhutan, the only country that has developed and implemented Gross National Happiness in its constitution could not appear on the list due to technical matters.

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