‘A city is the pulsating product of the human hand and mind, reflecting man’s history, his struggle for freedom, creativity, genius-and his selfishness and errors.’ (Charles Abrams)
For some travelers, gazing at a mountain, swimming in rivers or navel gazing on a beach only takes them so far. The city has been the birthplace of art, ideas and social movements for time immemorial and, in a planet with shrinking resources and growing population, cities look to be the model for the future.
More than that, cities are where you can walk and be anonymous, where you can fall in love ten times a day with random strangers that you’ll never see again. Cities are places where there’s always something going on, somewhere to go dancing or nurse a glass of wine in a hidden away bar where no one will ever find you.
For the traveler, cities are likely to be the modern face of the country, where the young people are hanging out, having left their folks behind back in the country. In the absence of the watchful, shaming eye of the village, inhibitions are dropped in the city and a new identity is formed.
There are so many cool cities out there that we didn’t feature – Kathmandu, New York, Barcelona, Buenas Aires and Berlin amongst them – but that’s the nature of subjectivity. Had we written this list a month later we might have chosen ten completely different cities for our cool list.
Hey, have a love affair in Moscow and even that monstrosity takes on a special glow each time you remember the cosy evenings in when it was -30 outside.
See how it compares with the 10 Worst Cities we know…