Asheville makes ‘World’s Friendliest Cities’ list

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

It’s the latter, released in the last few days, that might cause the most surprises, with U.S. cities dominating the “unfriendly” list.

Newark in 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,” said the Conde Nast Traveler write up.

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

Oakland (3rd) “has an image problem and a split personality” according to one reader who answered the survey. New Haven (7th) is the city of “rude, unfriendly folks;” Detroit (8th) was named the “armpit of the world” by one reader and Atlantic City (9th) dismissed as a “pale shadow of Las Vegas.”

Other cities in the list included Islamabad in Pakistan (2nd least friendly), Luanda in Angola (4th least friendly), Kuwait City in Kuwait (5th) and Lome in Togo (6th). Tangier in Morocco (10th), rounded up the top 10.

Conde Nast Traveler stressed in its report that the rankings are inspired by various factors including location, political perception, size and language barriers, and may not be due simply to the rude behavior of the people of those cities.

But enough badmouthing. The survey also announced 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 closely followed in second place and Thimpu of Bhutan wrapped up the top three.

The world’s friendliest cities

20.= Cork, Ireland

20.= Asheville, North Carolina, United States

18. Edinburg, Scotland

16.= Savannah, Georgia, United States

16.= Auckland, New Zealand

14.= Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

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, United States

4. Queenstown, New Zealand

3. Thimpu, Bhutan

2. Hobart, Tasmania

1. Florianopolis, Brazil

The world’s unfriendliest cities

20. Caracas, Venezuela

19. Bethlehem, Palestine

18. Casablanca, Morocco

17. Wilmington, Delaware, United States

16. Moscow, Russia

15. Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

14. Shenzhen, China

13. Albany, New York, United States

12. Los Angeles, United States

11. Guangzhou, China

10. Tangier, Morocco

9. Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States

8. Detroit, Michigan, United States

7. New Haven, Connecticut, United States

6. Lome, Togo

5. Kuwait City, Kuwait

4. Luanda, Angola

3. Oakland, California, United States

2. Islamabad, Pakistan

1. Newark, New Jersey, United States

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