Melbourne, Australia has once again been recognised as the world’s most liveable city, topping the annual Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Global Liveability Index for the fifth consecutive year. Melbourne is the first city to have been given the accolade for five consecutive years.
The EIU’s Liveability Ranking assesses living conditions in 140 cities across the globe by assigning a rating across five broad categories, including: stability; healthcare; culture and environment; education; and infrastructure. Even as city liveability scores worldwide fluctuate, Melbourne presents a picture of stability and maintains an impressive score of 97.5%.
There are four other Australian cities ranked in the top tier of liveability, namely Adelaide, Sydney, Perth and Brisbane, but Melbourne once again came out top with its strong art culture, world class facilities and infrastructure, and its standing reputation as Coffee Capital of Australia.
Here are five lists of top five facts that make Melbourne the best city in the world to live for the fifth time in a row:
Arts and Culture
Arts and culture runs deep through the veins of Melbourne as the quaint city offers one of the highest densities of commercial art galleries in the world. The National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) Ian Potter Centre houses the nation’s largest permanent collection of Australian art while Museum Victoria is proud to be the southern hemisphere’s largest museum. In fact, Melbourne is appointed a UNESCO City of Literature and home to Australia’s publishing industry and hosts more than 3,000 live music performances every week.
Eating and drinking
Melbourne proves itself to be a foodie heaven, boasting more than 2,000 cafes and a further 3,000 restaurants in Melbourne. Melbourne’s inner-city bistros and cafes alone can seat a combined 178,320 hungry citizens at any one point in time. Victoria is home to over 850 wineries, including 650 cellar door experiences and 21 distinct wine regions. Living up to its coffee obsessed culture, the Port of Melbourne handles an average of 30 tonnes of coffee beans every day, enough to produce 3 million cups of coffee each day. One of Melbourne’s defining food festivals, the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival sees more than 200 events take place in just over two weeks, including the World’s Longest Lunch – one table with 1,600 diners.
Although the state comprises just 3% of Australia’s total landmass, Victoria is home to 30% of Australia’s native animals. There are 139 mammal species in Victoria including kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, possums, wombats, platypus and echidnas. Victoria’s parks are home to more than 4,300 native plants and 948 native animal species, including: eighty-seven species of lizard, fifty-two skinks, twelve dragons, eleven legless lizards, nine geckos, three monitors (goannas), twenty-seven species of snake. Victorian natural ecosystems support at least: 111 mammals, 447 birds, 46 freshwater and 600 marine fish, 133 reptiles, 33 amphibians.
Melbourne is the only city in the world that has five international standard sporting facilities (including four with retractable roofs) on the fringe of its central business district. It plays host to the Australian Open Tennis Championships, the Australian Grand Prix, the Australian 500CC Motorcycle Grand Prix, Melbourne Cup Carnival, the Australian Football League Grand Final and many other special events every year. Melbourne is the only city in the world to host both the F1 Grand Prix and a tennis Grand Slam tournament, held at The Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) which was established in 1853, less than 20 years after the founding of Melbourne.
As Australia’s Sports Capital, Melbourne was the birthplace of Australian football in 1859, Test cricket in 1877 and one-day international cricket in 1971. Melbourne is also the home of the ‘race that stops the nation’ with the Melbourne Cup Carnival attracting over 343,000 visitors from 42 countries in 2014. This year will be the Carnival’s 155th year.
Melbourne’s International Comedy Festival is amongst the world’s top three comedy festivals (with Edinburgh and Montreal). In 2014, it hosted 6,488 performances by 2,228 artists. 2015 marks the 30th anniversary of Melbourne Festival, during which time, 11 Artistic Directors have turned it into one of the finest on the international stage. In 2014, 1000 artists from 23 different countries participated in 15 world premieres and 21 Australian premieres at 30+ venues across the city. Not to be beat, the Melbourne Fringe Festival 2014 saw more than 6,000 artists take part, presenting over 400 shows, exhibitions and events and drew a crowd of over 322,000 in festival events across the city.
Meanwhile, Melbourne’s International Jazz Festival typically sees more than 40,000 people attend over 100 public events, with over 500 international and Australian artists performing. The most popular festival of them all, the dusk to dawn outdoor arts festival White Night Melbourne turns the entire city into a magnificent playground of art and light, and attracted 1.3million visitors in its first three years.
With so many stand out reasons why Melbourne is a great city, it comes as no surprise to many that Melbourne is the world’s undisputed most liveable city for 5 years running.