The 15 best cities in the world, ranked

Bangkok, Thailand, (left) and Ubud, Indonesia, (right).

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Bangkok, Thailand, (left) and Ubud, Indonesia, (right).
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shutterstock

With its canal-laden Ancient Town and famous Japanese Covered Bridge, Hoi An has been named the best city in the world.

Hoi An, located on Vietnam’s central coast, topped Travel + Leisure‘s “World’s Best Cities” 2019 list. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, followed close behind at second on the list, while Chiang Mai, Thailand, took third.

Three of the top five places on Travel + Leisure’s list are cities located in Mexico, while two US destinations – Charleston, South Carolina, and Santa Fe, New Mexico – ranked among the top 16 cities in the world.

Check out the full ranking of the world’s best places to visit below.


15. As Thailand’s capital and most populous city, Bangkok serves as a major cultural and business hub for the country.

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Grand palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha in Bangkok, Thailand.
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Travel Mania/Shutterstock

14. Visitors to Santa Fe, New Mexico, can take in the city’s signature Pueblo-style architecture and famous arts scene.

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An outdoor shop in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
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Zachary C. Person/Shutterstock

13. Seville, the capital of Spain’s Andalusia region, is known for flamenco dancing and a number of iconic buildings, like the Plaza de España and the Catedral de Sevilla.

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The Tower of Gold along the Guadalquivir River.
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Allard One/Shutterstock

12. Charleston, South Carolina, is a stunning coastal city that has so much Southern charm it’s been repeatedly named America’s friendliest city.

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Charleston, South Carolina.
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f11photo/Shutterstock

Read more: 21 photos that show why Charleston is one of America’s most popular destinations right now


11. Once the center of the Roman Empire, Rome remains Italy’s capital and is full of relics including the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and the Pantheon.

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The Colosseum in Rome, Italy.
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Catarina Belova/Shutterstock

Read more: The cheapest European city you can fly to, based on which US state you live in


10. Visitors to Udaipur, India, can explore the city’s extravagant royal palaces situated on picturesque, man-made lakes.

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City Palace on Lake Pichola in Udaipur, India.
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Pikoso.kz / Shutterstock

9. The charming Tuscan city of Florence, Italy, is known as the birthplace of the Renaissance and is home to many of the world’s best-known works of art.

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Il duomo in Florence, Italy.
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Catarina Belova/Shutterstock

8. Kyoto is a Japanese city on the island of Honshu that’s full of gardens, palaces, wooden houses, and religious shrines.

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Kyoto, Japan.
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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

7. One of the most populous cities in the world, Tokyo, Japan, is famous for its electronics, video games, manga, Anime, ramen, and much more.

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Akihabara, Tokyo, Japan.
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ESB Professional/Shutterstock

6. From terraced rice paddies to Hindu temples and shrines, Ubud, Indonesia, is one of Bali’s most popular destinations.

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Pura Taman Saraswati temple in Ubud, Indonesia.
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Sytilin Pavel/Shutterstock

Read more: Visitors have discovered that a Bali tourist attraction popular with Instagram influencers is actually a fake photo op


5. Oaxaca, Mexico, is known for its colonial buildings and lively, bustling atmosphere. More than a third of its residents speak an indigenous language.

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Oaxaca, Mexico.
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Kelli Hayden/Shutterstock

4. The most populous city in North America, Mexico’s capital city of Mexico City is home to Templo Mayor, the baroque Catedral Metropolitana de México of the Spanish conquistadors, and the Palacio Nacional.

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The Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City, Mexico.
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Matt Gush/Shutterstock

3. Located in a mountainous region in the north of Thailand, Chiang Mai is home to many extravagant Buddhist temples scattered throughout its rolling, green hills.

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Chiang Mai, Thailand.
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Take Photo/Shutterstock

2. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, is known for baroque Spanish architecture and the iconic Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel.

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Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
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bpperry / iStock

1. Hoi An, Vietnam, tops the list of best cities with its canal-laden Ancient Town and famous Japanese Covered Bridge.

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Hoi An, Vietnam.
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Shutterstock/Romas_Photo