Top 10 Happiest Cities in the US

Top 10 Happiest Cities in the US

Have you ever wondered how it would feel to live in a happy city?

2020 has made us realize how valuable happiness is and now there is a huge demand to move to cities that are happier than the rest. For those who ponder which are the happiest cities, we’ve got a list of the 10 happiest cities in the US.

1Lincoln Nebraska97.59 sq mi291,0823,024.86/sq mi
2MadisonWisconsin101.53 sq mi 269,8403,391.23/sq mi 
3RaleighNorth Carolina147.64 sq mi467,6653,191.38/sq mi
4PortlandMaine69.44 sq mi 68,408990/sq mi
5BillingsMontana44.72 sq mi117,1162,625.33/sq mi
6Sioux FallsSouth Dakota79.93 sq mi192,5172,424.95/sq mi 
7BurlingtonVermont15.49 sq mi44,7432,900/sq mi 
8MinneapolisMinnesota57.51 sq mi 429,9547,962.11/sq mi
9AnchorageAlaska1,946.69 sq mi291,247170.63/sq mi 
10DenverColorado154.726 sq mi715,5224,674/sq mi
top 10 happiest cities in us

Let’s see these Happiest cities in the US in detail.

Lincoln, NE

  • Median home cost: $245,089
  • Median home rent: $917
  • Median household income: $59,228

When you hear that Lincoln is the happiest city in the US, there is no reason to be surprised. The capital city of Nebraska is not just a powerhouse and economic hub, but it is also drenched in scenic beauty. The city has about 6,000- plus acres of land devoted to 132 parks, 134 miles of trails, nine public pools, and five city golf courses. In addition, unlimited entertainment options are available to pick from. The city also ranks high on the list of the best places to retire in the US.

The reasons why Lincoln is a happy city:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High emotional and physical well being
  • Stable economy
  • Low divorce rate
  • Strong community feeling
  • 130 plus miles of walking trails
  • Unlimited outdoor entertainment facilities

Madison, WI

  • Median home cost: $327,451
  • Median home rent: $1,486
  • Median household income: $66,847

Madison secured the second berth in the list of happiest cities in the US for its environment, income, and employment. Madison has the charm of the big city with small-town Midwestern comfort. Despite being a big city, it has a small-town vibe, and when you want to live somewhere within a city for a job and income but have the craziness to settle somewhere away from the hustle and bustle, Madison is the best. There is no shortage of jobs here as it is highly industrialized. However, at the same time, farmer markets, unlimited wining and dining venues and a low crime rate give it a marvellous touch.

The reasons why Madison is a happy city:

  • More job opportunities and higher salary
  • Low depression rate
  • Robust sports culture
  • Strong community environment
  • High entertainment opportunities
  • Small town charm

Raleigh, NC

  • Median home cost: $390,571
  • Median home rent: $1,380
  • Median household income: $69,333

Raleigh is in the third slot for its mental health. The city is one of the most self-sufficient in terms of finance and this offers unlimited job opportunities. In addition, the community life is much stronger here. A big center where local businesses flourish, Raleigh has seen many start-ups in recent years. Raleigh’s assertive community treatment (ACT) includes psychiatrists, nurses, social workers, substance abuse specialists, vocational specialists, certified peer support specialists, and other specialists who help adult individuals with severe and persistent mental illness live in their homes instead of institutions. This is one of the major factors contributing to the overall happiness of the residents.

The reasons why Raleigh is a happy city:

  • Booming economy
  • Low poverty rate
  • Good community living
  • Affordable quality housing
  • Top-rated physical and psychological well being
  • Better education opportunities

Portland, ME

  • Median home cost: $316, 254
  • Median home rent: $849
  • Median household income: $60,467

Portland is now the 4th happiest city in the US for its financial well-being as most residents are gainfully employed, own houses, and retain money in their savings. Portland also ranks high in health, both physical and mental, with low obesity rates and high activity counts as well as having low depression/suicide rates. Portland is also environment-friendly, with low traffic, a large number of open spaces, and high recycling rates.

The reasons why Portland is a happy city:

  • Better standard of living
  • Low obesity rates and quality healthcare
  • Growing job opportunities
  • Financial well being
  • Better work-life balance
  • Low depression and suicide rates

Billings, MT

  • Median home cost: $285,600
  • Median home rent: $709
  • Median household income: $48,074

The largest city in Montana, Billings is not just the richest but even the most beautiful city in the state. It is great to raise a family as there are some of the best schools in the state and even healthcare is premium. Billings is also one of the safest in the US and the crime rate is extremely low here. The city also boasts fabulous dining and winning options plus places for late-night entertainment. In addition, Billings also has a great history, the remains of which are still preserved intact.  

The reasons why Billings is a happy city:

  • Quality wining and dining options
  • Low crime rate
  • Low divorce rate
  • Unlimited outdoor recreation options
  • Vast green areas
  • Rich heritage
  • Better jobs and salary

Sioux Falls, SD

  • Median home cost: $274,303
  • Median home rent: $682
  • Median household income: $51, 882

Sioux City is 6th on the list of happiest cities in the US. The low depression rate, booming economy, demand for skilled labor across multiple sectors, including the construction and hotel industry has contributed to making Sioux Falls one of the happiest in the country. The city’s lush parking system offers more than 3,000 acres of outdoor recreation, open to the public. Despite being rich and beautiful, Sioux Falls is more affordable than many US states.

The reasons why Sioux Falls is a happy city:

  • High demand for skilled labor
  • Booming economy
  • Low depression and suicide rates
  • 3,000 plus acres of green space
  • Low crime rate
  • Physical and psychological well being

Burlington, VT

  • Median home cost: $429,377
  • Median home rent: $1,132
  • Median household income: $51, 394
Burlington, Vermont, the USA at Church Street Marketplace.

Burlington is more like a gem of Vermont with its unmatched scenic beauty, high rate of employment, first-class infrastructure, and entertainment options. There is a strong sports culture that promotes community feeling among the residents. When you consider income, the standard of living, and health factors, Burlington ranks top in all. In addition, the city is also ranked as the safest for women in the US. 

The reasons why Burlington is a happy city:

  • Ranks high in emotional & physical well being
  • Fabulous community and environment
  • Better job and pay options
  • Above average healthcare facilities
  • Pristine nature
  • Vast green spaces
  • Unlimited hiking and biking trails

Minneapolis, MN

  • Median home cost: $321, 732
  • Median home rent: $1,538
  • Median household income: $62,583

Minneapolis ranks high not just in finance and employment but even in mental health. As the economic center of Minnesota, there is no dearth of jobs here and even the packages are high. In addition, the city witnesses the highest emotional and physical well-being. This includes adequate sleep levels, low depression rates, and high life expectancy rates. Moreover, the suicide rate is also extremely low in Minneapolis. The warm and nice weather also contributes to the happiness factor among the city residents.

The reasons why Minneapolis is a happy city:

  • The best park system in the US
  • Never-ending hiking and biking trails
  • Economically rich and constantly booming
  • Fabulous food scene
  • The streets are cleanest in the country
  • Standard education opportunities
  • Strong sports culture

Anchorage, AK

  • Median home cost: $361, 105
  • Median home rent: $1,130
  • Median household income: $78,121

Anchorage is the 9th happiest city in the US and here the people eat healthily, learn something new every day, are civically engaged, and financially secured. The city is one of the prettiest on this planet and perhaps the most scenic among the happiest cities. Among the residents asked, almost everyone was found happy living in Anchorage. The city has mesmerizing outdoors with endless fun opportunities. This also perhaps plays a major role in keeping the residents happy. In addition, Anchorage is economically rich and has got many corporate offices. This means, there’s no shortage of jobs here.

The reasons why Anchorage is a happy city:

  • Rich economy
  • Breathtaking nature
  • Healthy lifestyle
  • Wide hunting opportunities
  • Never ending trailing and hiking tracks
  • Unlimited winter activities

Denver, CO

  • Median home cost: $571, 163
  • Median home rent: $1,824
  • Median household income: $75,646

The residents of Denver feel fortunate as they are one of the happiest in the US. While the city ranks high in both mental and physical health, it is also one of the major power centres of the state. As a result, jobs are plenty in Denver and residents enjoy a strong financial status. Denver has been continuously booming for the past 5 years and is expected to continue its growth for the next decade. The city also has unlimited parks and open spaces for outdoor entertainment. 

The reasons why Denver is a happy city:

  • Healthy population
  • Low crime rate
  • Unlimited fun opportunities
  • Low depression rate
  • More job opportunities and better packages
  • Good climate

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Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the happiest and healthiest city in the US?

Naples, Florida has been making it into the ‘happiest and healthiest city’ rankings for many years in a row. Clean water, sand, 300 + days of sunshine, low crime rate, amazing food scene, fresh food market, booming economy, good air, and unlimited cycling tracks contribute to Naples’ high ranking.

Where should I move to be happy?

It is a challenge to question this question as happiness does not have a clear definition. And the happiest cities are chosen after analyzing multiple factors, such as mental and physical well being, recreation opportunities, city architecture, cost of living, jobs, salary, and many other factors. You need to pick your place based on your needs. For example, if you are looking for job security, your choice of city should be based on the availability of jobs and better perks. For a retired person, the factors will be clean air & water, recreation opportunities, low tax, better healthcare, and better public transport.

Which state is the happiest?

Hawaii is consistently ranked the happiest state in the US for the past few years. Pristine environment, better healthcare, unlimited sunshine, low depression rate, and booming economy makes Hawaii the happiest state. Utah comes second in the list of happiest US states.