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By Lauren Vadnjal
August 17, 2016
By Lauren Vadnjal
August 17, 2016

For some reason Sydneysiders have a tendency to rag on each other's hostility and unfriendliness. This probably has something to do with the city's day-to-day shortcomings — i.e. rage-inducing traffic, waiting for a bus that never comes, having to pay $5 for a soy latte etc. — that could make even Kimmy Schmidt a cranky human for a morning. It also might have something to do with Melburnians spreading the rumour Sydneysiders are jerks in the long-standing Melbourne-Sydney rivalry (which, by the way, is propagated almost exclusively by you, Melbourne). But evidently we all need to take a step back and reassess because it seems visitors to our fair country have quite a different view on things — they've just ranked Sydney as the second friendliest city in the world in the 2016 Condé Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards survey.

Around 128,000 readers of the international publication voted in this year's survey, and the category for the friendliest and unfriendliest cities in the world was rated against criteria such as how welcome a traveller felt, how helpful its locals were and how easy it was to get around. Sydney topped the list last year, but in 2016 still came in a very respectable second to the US city of Charleston in South Carolina. No other Australian cities got a look in, but Wellington, Auckland and Queenstown all got a place in the top 20. Half the list is made up of U.S. cities, which isn't surprising considering CNT's audience.

On the other hand, the unfriendliest cities in the world were named as New Jersey's Newark, Tijuana in Mexico and the Californian city of Oakland, with readers citing that they felt unsafe, overcrowded or — in the case of Newark — just sad. Naw.

But here's the places you want to go for the warm smiles and welcoming gestures.


1. Charleston, South Carolina, U.S.
2. Sydney, Australia
3. Dublin, Ireland
4. Queenstown, New Zealand
5. Park City, Utah, U.S.
6. Galway, Ireland
7. Savannah, Georgia, U.S.
8. Krakow, Poland
9. Bruges, Belgium
10. Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
11. Edinburgh, Scotland
12. Austin, Texas, U.S.
13. Santa Fe, New Mexico, U.S.
14. Asheville, North Carolina, U.S.
15. Auckland, New Zealand
16. Reykjavik, Iceland
17. Wellington, New Zealand
18. Jackson, Wyoming, U.S.
19. New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
20. Burlington, Vermont, U.S.

Image: Frances Gunn.

Published on August 17, 2016 by Lauren Vadnjal

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