We’ve all seen questions asking about the “best state”, the “most beautiful country”, the “most amazing road trip” in which there is no perfect answer, but merely the viewpoint of each person answering the question.
Objectivity is nearly impossible. These questions seek our personal opinion rather than factually correct answers, because it’s nearly impossible to quantify “favorite” or “beautiful” statistically.
This question includes the terminology “major city” for a very rare double whammy!
- How do we define “major” city?
- What climate is “best” to humans?
This is rare even for Quora. Double subjectivity! I cannot resist a question that solicits personal travel experience AND the possibility of mathematical analysis. And, believe it or not, I might just be able to answer this with more fact than opinion.
I’ll let each reader decide what they consider to be a major city based on the population figures I’ve provided. In my analysis, I considered both heavily populated cities, as well as less populated cities that are part of a large metropolitan area.
We all have our preferences. Personally, I start to feel uncomfortable when the temperature rises above 65 F (18.3 C). Thus, I love visiting Reykjavik, Iceland, where the warmest month has an average daily high of 57 F (13.9 C). My wife wants it hot and humid, so she loves our visits to Bangkok, Thailand, where the highs fluctuate between 89 F (31.7 C) during the winter and 96 F (35.6 C) during the summer, something I call hell on earth. So let’s just throw out varying opinions on favorite temperature, because we’ll never all agree.
Based on scientific research, the human body actually prefers 71.6 F (22 C). That’s not only based on extensive surveys, but also on scientific data regarding the temperature at which the human body doesn’t have to work so hard to either cool us down or warm us up.
Temperature is a good start, but climate is much more than just temperature patterns over a long period of time. I wrote a formula that analyzed not only high and low temperatures in each month, but also the deviation from 71.6 F, monthly rainfall (avoiding too little or too much), average daily wind speeds (avoiding no breezes or constantly windy), humidity (few people like very high humidity), and heat index (what the temperature actually feels like).
I narrowed down my search to roughly 100 cities that are regarded as having the best climate in the world, ran the formula, and produced the list below. You can decided what constitutes a “major” city in your opinion.
Best climate – city over 100,000
Cartago, Costa Rica
- 2020 Population: 164,402
- Hottest month: April (average high 77 F (25 C))
- Coldest month: December (average high 72.8 F (22.7 C))
Best climate – city over 200,000
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain
- 2020 Population: 378,517
- Hottest month: August (average high 79.6 F (26.4 C))
- Coldest month: January (average high 68.2 F (20.1 C))
Best climate – city over 1 million
San Diego, California, United States
- 2020 Population: 1,436,790 city (metro population 3,317,749)
- Hottest month: September (average high 77.3 F (25.2 C))
- Coldest month: December (average high 66.1 F (18.9 C))
Best climate – metropolitan area over 5 million
- 2020 Population: 5,307,844
- Hottest month: January (average high 79.3 F (26.3 C))
- Coldest month: July (average high 62.9 F (17.2 C))
Best climate – any city within a metropolitan area over 10 million
Huntington Beach, California, United States
- 2020 Population: 201,941 city (part of the Los Angeles metro, 2020 population 13,257,684)
- Hottest month: September (average high 73.4 F (23 C))
- Coldest month: February (average high 63.3 F (17.4 C))
If you’ve ever wondered why Southern California is so expensive, the perfect weather and beautiful beaches are definitely part of the equation, leading to high demand.
Written by: Peter Wade who have visited 79 countries and all 7 continents.
Story originally appeared on QUORA