The world’s unfriendliest cities revealed

18th Dec 2012
Written by: Macca Sherifi

The world’s unfriendliest cities revealed

Moscow voted as the world’s unfriendliest city

There’s no doubt about it, some cities have a hard time of it. Take Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh as an example. It’s big, it’s dirty, and there really isn’t a lot to do there. Maybe that’s why it isn’t a popular place for backpackers. However, Moscow? London? They didn’t fare any better as they both have recently been voted first and second in TripAdvisor’s survey of the world’s unfriendliest cities.

On the brighter end of the scale, Cancun in Mexico was voted at the world’s friendliest city, followed by Tokyo in Japan and Lisbon in Portugal.

Tokyo was the most highly decorated world city ranked number one for best taxi services, friendliest taxi drivers, best public transportation, cleanest streets, and safety.

While New York City was ranked top for shopping, travellers felt the city streets could use a sweep as the city ranked 28 out of 40 for cleanliness. Global respondents also believed visiting the Big Apple may break the bank as it is ranked 32 out of 40 for value.

London was voted as the second unfriendliest city in the world

Emma Shaw, spokesperson for TripAdvisor, was quick to defend the UK’s capital: “The popularity of London as one of the most visited cities in the world remains… Indeed, this year, it was voted the best city in the world by the TripAdvisor Travellers Choice Awards. Even so, this study proves that even a great city isn’t going to be perfect in every way…”

The survey was based on the 40 featured cities that received the largest amount of international visitors in 2012.

The 75,000 participants of the survey were selected because they were tourists or locals who had written a review about hotels, restaurants or attractions this year.

What do you think are the most and least friendly cities in the world gappers? Chat about it and let us know on the message boards.

If you’re planning on seeing any of these cities in 2013 then head over to our destination section for more advice and information.

Top five least friendly cities:

  1. Moscow
  2. London
  3. Hong Kong
  4. Beijing
  5. Dubai

Top five most friendly cities:

  1. Cancun
  2. Tokyo
  3. Lisbon
  4. Istanbul
  5. Cape Town

Law & Human Rights Internships in Cape Town

from £790

21 - 168 days

South Africa

Cape Town is a fantastic destination for an international internship - a vibrant and bustling city with business, medical and...

New Years Hogmanay Party Express

from £190

1 days

United Kingdom

Hogmanay is Scottish word for the last day of the year, and we’re here to celebrate on Stoke’s 24/hr New...

Conservation Work on the Galapagos

from £970

7 - 21 days


Help to preserve one of the most unique and fascinating islands in the world. This is a great programme for...

South Island Mountain Bike Tour

from £1025

7 days

New Zealand

The South Island is renowned for its outstanding beauty and adventures. Plant your feet on your pedals as you take...

Autumn Ski Instructor Course Zermatt

from £5520

56 days


On the highest glacier in Europe and with a team of professional ski coaches. All there to best prepare you...

Online TEFL Course and Job Guidance Services

from £1060

77 days

Become TEFL certified from the comfort of you own home with GoEco's Online TEFL Course!

Volunteer in Community Development in Madagascar

from £420

14 - 84 days


Volunteer on the Community Development volunteer project in Madagascar. Located in Nosy Komba.

Africa Overland Coast to Coast

from £1695

56 days

Botswana, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa...

Travelling overland from Kenya to the Cape, this trip is for adventurous travelers who are willing to be part of...

4 Days Amalfi Coast Adventure

from £299

4 days


4 days to explore the land of passion, great food and Italian customs. Visit the ruins of Pompeii, relax on...

In-Class TEFL Course in Beijing

from £1185

20 days


Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Beijing and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.


The Great Silk Road

from £4410

Unlock the secrets of the Silk Road on this immersive journey across Central Asia. From Beijing all the way to...

Ultimate Madagascar Adventure

from £2090

Home to mind-blowing scenery, lush rainforests, curious lemurs, and all the outdoor splendour you could possibly ask for (and then...

Phuket Sailing Adventure

from £1085

Just imagine seven fabulous days enjoying sublime seascapes of shimmering turquoise water, white sandy beaches and craggy limestone peaks. That's...

Northern Lights & Arctic Circle by Rail

from £2199

If it’s a picturesque train journey through wintery mountains and past tiny Scandinavian towns you’re looking for, then check out...

Cruising Croatia’s Central Coast

from £1570

There’s a special place in central Dalmatia that’s home to beautifully preserved medieval towns and little coves with some of...

Amazing Southern Africa

from £4695

Travel to Africa and jump onboard an exhilarating journey through the magnificent nations of South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe....

Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctica

from £5999

Challenge. Desolation. Unlimited wonder. It’s not difficult to grasp what attracted the great explorers to Antarctica. Get a personal appreciation...

Southern Cross Eastbound – Lima to Rio

From the Nazca Lines and the heights of Incan archaeology to the beach at Ipanema, this 45-day long tour provides...

Delhi to Goa

from £795

From spice-filled bazaars to white sandy beaches, opulent palaces to spice plantations, discover India in all its glory on this...

Classic China & Yunnan Express

If you’re looking for both the main highlights of China plus a little something out of the way, this is...

[contact-form-7 id="4" title="Contact form 1"]