Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Which are the world's friendliest and unfriendliest cities?

By Hiufu Wong, CNN
August 21, 2013 -- Updated 1407 GMT (2207 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Conde Nast Traveler unveils friendliest and unfriendliest cities list
  • U.S. cities dominate least-friendlies chart
  • Travelers feel most welcomed in Brazil's island city of Florianopolis
  • Detroit called "armpit of the world"

Editor's note: "The City" is a CNN special series that profiles the sustainable urban future of five cities over five days. Watch the show every day during our special theme week starting Monday, Aug 19 on "World Business Today" at 1300 GMT and "Connect The World" at 2000 GMT.

(CNN) -- The United States, land of freedom and opportunity, is also the land of scowling faces and folded arms, according to a new poll.

Travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler has unveiled the results of its annual readers' choice survey.

How cities fight climate change

More than 46,000 readers gave their opinions last year on everything from favorite airlines to best hotels and friendliest and unfriendliest cities.

Johannesburg mayor's vision for future

It's the latter category that might cause the most surprises, with U.S. cities dominating the "unfriendly" list.

Rotterdam's floating future

Newark, New Jersey, is the unfriendliest city in the world according to the survey.

"Newark is best known for being the site of an airport near New York, and for many of our readers, that's the only reason to stop there," says Conde Nast Traveler.

In total, five U.S. cities were voted into the top 10 unfriendly cities list and eight made the top 20.

Oakland, California (third), "has an image problem and a split personality" according to a reader who answered the survey.

New Haven, Connecticut (seventh), home of Yale University, is the city of "rude, unfriendly folks;" Detroit (eighth) was called the "armpit of the world" by one reader and Atlantic City, New Jersey (ninth), was dismissed as a "pale shadow of Las Vegas."

Other cities in the list include Islamabad in Pakistan (second least friendly), Luanda in Angola (fourth), Kuwait City (fifth) Lome in Togo (sixth) and Tangier in Morocco (tenth).

What do you think? Tell us about your own friendly or unfriendly travel experiences in the comments section below.

5. Charleston, South Carolina
Score: 91.5
The only U.S. city that made it into the top 10 friendliest cities. Charleston took first place in a previous poll to find the friendliest cities in the United States. 5. Charleston, South Carolina Score: 91.5 The only U.S. city that made it into the top 10 friendliest cities. Charleston took first place in a previous poll to find the friendliest cities in the United States.
World's friendliest cities
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
>
>>
U.S. cities rule \'unfriendliest cities\' list U.S. cities rule 'unfriendliest cities' list

Conde Nast Traveler stresses that its rankings are inspired by factors including location, political perception, size and language barriers, and don't necessarily correspond to rude behavior of locals.

But enough badmouthing.

The survey also announces the friendliest cities in the world.

Florianopolis, the island city in Brazil, is the world's friendliest city according to the poll.

Hobart in Tasmania followed in second place and Thimpu in Bhutan wrapped up the top three.

One U.S. city made it into the top 10 friendliest cities -- Charleston, South Carolina.

Standing fifth in the global list, Charleston was also voted the friendliest city in the United States in a previous poll.

The world's unfriendliest cities

20. Caracas, Venezuela

19. Bethlehem, Palestine

18. Casablanca, Morocco

17. Wilmington, Delaware

16. Moscow

15. Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

14. Shenzhen, China

13. Albany, New York

12. Los Angeles

11. Guangzhou, China

10. Tangier, Morocco

9. Atlantic City, New Jersey

8. Detroit

7. New Haven, Connecticut

6. Lome, Togo

5. Kuwait City

4. Luanda, Angola

3. Oakland, California

2. Islamabad, Pakistan

1. Newark, New Jersey

The world's friendliest cities

20. Cork, Ireland

20. Asheville, North Carolina

18. Edinburgh, Scotland

16.Savannah, Georgia

16. Auckland, New Zealand

14. Victoria, British Columbia

14. Galena, Illinois

13. Dublin, Ireland

12. Christchurch, New Zealand

11. Chiang Mai, Thailand

9. Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

9. Kilkenny, Ireland

8. Mandalay, Myanmar

6. Margaret River, Australia

6. Paro, Bhutan

5. Charleston, South Carolina

4. Queenstown, New Zealand

3. Thimpu, Bhutan

2. Hobart, Tasmania

1. Florianopolis, Brazil

Also on CNN: 20 biggest travel mistakes

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
December 16, 2014 -- Updated 1056 GMT (1856 HKT)
Nonprofit Ethical Traveler has released its annual list of the developing countries doing the most to promote human rights and preserve their environments.
December 11, 2014 -- Updated 1036 GMT (1836 HKT)
These waterfront watering holes have killer ocean views, creative drinks and the mahalo vibe we demand.
December 10, 2014 -- Updated 2038 GMT (0438 HKT)
Can't wait to book your ticket to Indianapolis and Oakland? The venerable guidebook is right there with you
December 10, 2014 -- Updated 0625 GMT (1425 HKT)
By helicopter, snowmobile and big-wheel truck across some of the world's most volatile landscapes.
December 9, 2014 -- Updated 2142 GMT (0542 HKT)
Construction begins on a new Singapore airport complex that could make delays and layovers a pleasure.
December 9, 2014 -- Updated 1441 GMT (2241 HKT)
Inflight chatterboxes are annoying but they're not the worst violators of onboard etiquette, according to an Expedia study.
December 8, 2014 -- Updated 2232 GMT (0632 HKT)
These statues are awe-inspiring even for the strongest of non-believers.
December 5, 2014 -- Updated 1659 GMT (0059 HKT)
The Palace of the Parliament, built by former Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.
25 years after the death of Romania's communist dictator, tourism is helping heal old wounds.
December 5, 2014 -- Updated 1152 GMT (1952 HKT)
Photo sharing website names the top 10 destinations for geo-tagged snapshots.
December 3, 2014 -- Updated 1005 GMT (1805 HKT)
New York may be a paradise of Zagat-rated, Michelin-starred restaurants, but some of its best food can be found on the streets.
December 2, 2014 -- Updated 0601 GMT (1401 HKT)
Guide Lebo behind the wheel of Chobe Game Lodge's first electric game viewing vehicle, at Chobe National Park in Botswana.
Chobe Game Lodge in Botswana ups the eco stakes with what it claims is world's first battery-powered safari fleet.
November 24, 2014 -- Updated 0118 GMT (0918 HKT)
The interior of the Formosa Boulevard Mass Rapid Transit Station in Kaohsiung, in southern Taiwan.
These quirky and beautiful subway stops make standing cheek-to-cheek with 45 strangers almost seem fun.
November 21, 2014 -- Updated 1314 GMT (2114 HKT)
A scene from a desert safari in Dubai
Luxury vintage Land Rover tours explore Bedouin backwaters without bashing up precious dunes.
ADVERTISEMENT