TOP 10

Going Solo? Travel To Some Of The Happiest Countries In The World

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Every year, the UN releases a list of the world’s happiest countries, which is determined by the experts who look at economics, psychology, health and public policy of each country. After they get all the statistics out, there is a list of supposedly happiest countries in the world where maybe all that joy is infectious. Interestingly, you’ll want to pack a sweater, because almost all of these happy countries are in the northern hemisphere and include more mountains and rural landscape than tropical beaches. From the beaches of Australia to the fjords of Iceland, you’re sure to find your “happy place” at these wonderful countries.


1. Switzerland

With cobblestone streets, medieval architecture and stunning scenery, you’ll be smiling the minute you step out of the airport. Take the train to the Swiss capital Bern or make your way to the Swiss alps for some of the best ski conditions to be found in Europe.

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Image via Wikicommons

2. Iceland

Culture and nature blend together effortlessly in this happy country. Enjoy a soak in a healthful thermal pool, be amazed by the Northern lights and enjoy some of the freshest seafood around.


3. Denmark

The Danes have a tradition of “hygge” which translates to mean the need for “coziness.” No matter where you travel in Denmark, you’re sure to be greeted with a friendly community.

Trolltunga_Norway_Wiki_Commons 2

Image via Wikicommons

4. Norway

During the summer, the sun stays out for 24 hours meaning you can explore all night long under a midnight sun. If you’re a foodie, head to Oslo, a gastronomic heaven where several restaurants have won awards. Kick back in a fisherman’s cottage or chase the Northern Lights to truly experience one of the most naturally beautiful countries on earth.

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Image via Wikicommons

5. Canada

Canada is a fun blend of European style with the incredibly natural beauty only to be found in North America. Head to Quebec for a unique French experience and enjoy a bit of history that you won’t find anywhere else in North America. If nature is more up your alley, take the ultimate Canadian road trip and explore ice fields, archaeological sites and the stunning Banff National Park.

narnia finland

6. Finland

Whether you want to pet reindeer or catch a sighting of the rare Saimaa ringed seal, Finland is the place to be. There is no bad time to visit Finland, since winter here is downright magical and the summers are temperate and perfect for exploring both bustling cities and isolated islands.


7. Netherlands

Walk and bike your away across the country to really enjoy the most beautiful spots. There is even a town in the Netherlands that has banned cars, so if you’re looking for a place to unplug and do a digital detox, maybe it’s time to head to the cheery tulip fields of the Netherlands.


8. Sweden

Just twenty minutes away from Stockholm are about 30,000 islands that offer endless opportunities for happy activities. Swimming, hiking, cycling, horseback riding- whatever you want to do, Sweden is the place to do it. Plus, there’s regular crayfish parties. Oh, and IKEA originated here.

Hole_In_The_Rock_In_Bay_Of_Islands_Wikicommons 2

Image via Wikicommons

9. New Zealand

If “happy” to you means jumping off bridges and exploring dark caverns, New Zealand is the place for you. New Zealand is heaven for adrenaline junkies and its stunning scenery makes it the perfect place to rent a car and explore the pristine national parks.


10. Australia

From the magical underwater world of The Great Barrier Reed to one of the last surviving temperate rain forests in the world, Australia has a lot of be happy about. Besides the well-known friendliness of the Aussies, this is one of the only happy countries where you can work on your tan at a postcard-perfect beach.

Which of these “happy” countries have you been to? Share your stories in the comments below!

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    Travel and Visit
    January 1, 2016 at 8:08 pm

    Really welly written and you made a great list. All of these are not only happiest country but also well known for their beautiful nature.

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    August 15, 2015 at 4:31 pm

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    August 2, 2015 at 7:28 am

    No Latin American countries? Very biased research. I’ve seen other studies that list Costa Rica, Panama, and Colombia in the top 10. Not that these articles are worth anything anyways.

    July 23, 2015 at 7:32 pm

    I love the Netherlands, it is so so so friendly too!

    Aahana Kapoor
    July 22, 2015 at 6:39 pm

    Beautiful pictures and nicely written! Are your documents safe when you are traveling abroad? Zoomlee helps you store all your documents compiled in it and allows you to travel worry free. Check this great Zoomlee on its website for more features.

    July 21, 2015 at 4:57 am

    So many countries that I want to visit and now I have the added bonus of knowing that they ooze happiness! I can’t wait to one day travel all around Europe solo or not.

    July 16, 2015 at 11:40 pm

    Whoa, those Scandinavians are sure happy! I can’t wait to go to Iceland and Finland. I loved my time in Norway and Denmark for sure, and Australia is another trip I would love to go!

    July 16, 2015 at 5:01 am

    To me, Denmark is the best place for solo travel! Otherwise, I will prefer Paris.

    July 16, 2015 at 2:32 am

    It is perfect that most of these places are in Europe and that is where I will be studying abroad for 5 months coming end of August! I have already been to a few of these places and I am dying to go to one’s I haven’t, such as Finland. I have been to Iceland before, 8 years ago, but I would love to go back. It is a truly magical place and the people are always full of life. I can see why they made it on the list happiest places!

    July 15, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    Finally someone’s sharing good advices for “solo” travellers!

    Sanjana @ Green Global Travel
    July 15, 2015 at 2:06 am

    I loved this post! Made me happy just reading it! Thanks for sharing

  • Going Solo? Travel To Some Of The Happiest Coun...
    July 15, 2015 at 1:51 am

    […] Not only are these the happiest countries on earth, they also happen to be some of the prettiest with perfect coastlines, mountains and wide open skies.  […]

    July 14, 2015 at 9:43 pm

    All these countries are on my bucket list!
    I love mountains and snow and fjords and those clean, relaxed sea lines in Norway or Sweden. It looks so calming, no wonder those countries are the ‘happiest’ ones!

    Red Rock
    July 14, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    All these are the ten happiest countries in the world. Norway and Iceland are my favorite..!!
    thanks for posting this with us.

    Claire @ TallGirlBigWorld
    July 14, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    Just reading this article put me in a good mood! I’ve always wanted to visit Denmark, and after spending a semester in Germany and having met so many Fins, Finland is at the top of my list as well.

    July 14, 2015 at 9:11 am

    I can definitely see Australia as one of the happiest places. I loved it there! Sweden is on my list of places I’m really curious about too.


    Michelle | Lights Camera Travel
    July 14, 2015 at 7:48 am

    It’s nice to see Finland on this list – I met a Finnish girl when I was travelling through China and she said that was the misconception about her country – that everyone is depressed and suicidal! I would love to visit. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    July 14, 2015 at 6:13 am

    Are you sure all these countries are really that ‘happy’? I’ve lived in several countries, out of which one of them is on the list – The Netherlands – and, while it does have a great standard of living, this country has one of the highest suicide rates in the world, and I swear people are more depressed here than in countries with a lower standard of life. What you see from the outside might not be exactly what is really happening in a place

    July 14, 2015 at 5:27 am

    I’m from Denmark myself, and I’ve been to Sweden, the Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland and Canada. All lovely countries but nothing beats the Danish way of living. Scandinavia ftw 😉

    Tess x

    Art Klep
    July 14, 2015 at 1:58 am

    I’ve been too all countries on the list besides Finland and Iceland. I’m a Dutch expat and I’ve lived in NZ longer than in my “home” country. NZ is a happy place for sure but in my opinion the happiest part of the Netherlands Commonwealth is Curacao not the Netherlands. Curacao is a country since 2010 and is certainly worthy of this list.

    Amanda | Chasing My Sunshine
    July 14, 2015 at 1:39 am

    I am always so interested to see that so many of the happy countries are in cold climates. That’s not how I would define happy. 😉 But somehow, all of these places have weaseled their way onto my “to-travel” list. It’s so funny that they happen to be the happiest too. Thanks for the list!

    July 14, 2015 at 12:24 am

    So happy (pun intended) to see my home country on this list!

    Saakshi Kumar
    July 14, 2015 at 12:13 am

    Just cannot wait to travel to these places solo. XD

    July 13, 2015 at 10:58 pm

    Great post! I pretty much need to update my bucket list! Thanks for sharing.

    July 13, 2015 at 10:27 pm

    i live in australia and have visited switzerland. i hope to see all of these countries in my lifetime 🙂

    July 13, 2015 at 9:57 pm

    Im glad you mentionned Canada and Im so proud to be Canadian! 🙂
    I have to say that Switzerland is still in my top 3! And as I am in Australia at the moment, I think it is definitely an happy place to be!
    I think I am going to love your blog!

    Jennifer @ This Off Script Life
    July 13, 2015 at 7:58 pm

    I live in Zurich and can recommend Switzerland as a great place for solo travel (especially for women), mainly because it’s so safe. I think the “happiness” of Switzerland has more to do with its economic wealth, life expectancy, and national pride than the actual happiness/friendliness of the people, though. Just be prepared to open your pocket book when visiting. It’s expensive here.

      July 16, 2015 at 9:54 pm

      I will agree to this ..I have been to Swiss alone and it was an experience to remember . Breathtaking landscape , amazing food , paradise for shopping and to top it all very friendly and hospitable people . They greet you with smile and swiss choco .. Must go place for all travelers , specially for solo women travelers.

    July 13, 2015 at 7:54 pm

    Sweden and Norway are perfect places for solo traveling! Safe, and TONS to see/do and admire.
    I wanna visit Ausralia and NZ so bad, maybe for my next solo trip! They both look so incredible!

    x Carina

    Pirkko / Meriharakka
    July 13, 2015 at 6:38 pm

    Been there, done that 🙂
    Living in Finland most of these countries are considered as something you over the weekend and having had collecting countries as a sort of hobby for a while (102 done as we speak) also the rest of them are “done”. And yes, I did like also Australia and especially New Zealand. Even if they are really far away from Finland they are also quite similar to Finland – maybe that is why all of these countries ended up on this same list!

    July 13, 2015 at 5:08 pm

    I have been to three of these places already (Sweden, Canada and the Netherlands) and only have good things to say about these trips! Will hopefully hit all the places on this list one day!


    Kozue @ Tokyo Direct Diary
    July 13, 2015 at 3:55 pm

    I love Australia. I feel so happy with friendly, open-minded people and the great nature that stunned me many times.
    But I also love Canada and Switzerland! I agree with you, Kate, that it’s interesting that many in the list are cold places.

    July 13, 2015 at 3:31 pm

    I fell in love with Australia when I travelled it on my own. But has been years ago.


    July 13, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    I´ve been to nine of these ten countries, Canada still missing.
    Because of my fear of flying I prefer destinations which I can reach by car.

    If your ranking is really only about the happy people, I don`t doubt about it. You can really feel the good mood of the inhabitants as soon as you visit their countries.
    If it was also a bit about the beauty of the country, you had to put New Zealand at the top.
    And you`d have a new entry on second place: FRANCE.

    July 13, 2015 at 2:22 pm

    I love that you mentioned Finland here too since everyone seems to think we are somehow depressed here but it’s not true 😀 I love all those other places too, Iceland is probably my favorite place in the whole world and I’d love to visit New Zealand too.

    July 13, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    This list is amazing and I will have to keep it in mind for my next solo trip!

    xx Kelly

    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn
    July 13, 2015 at 8:42 am

    I couldn’t agree more with the top 10 here! The only negative about most of them is that they’re pretty unaffordable to travel in (I blew out my budget in Norway, Sweden, Iceland and Switzerland!), but they’re such stunning countries that it’s pretty much worth it 🙂