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Just A Fun Topic Here....

This doesn't seem to fit any specific category so I'm posting here:

Simply out of curiosity I like to ask people this question from time to time (call it a poll or survey if you'd like):

Assuming no obstacles or responsibilities were holding you back, and you had the opportunity to relocate to any city in the world (doesn't have to be in Europe) where would it be? Also, if you'd care to elaborate on "why" you chose the city you did it would be interesting as well.

Posted by
576 posts

I would also choose Paris. I could simply walk the streets everyday for the rest of my life and never get bored. Paris is simply a sensory explosion. Everything is so beautiful, from the art to the architecture to the desserts in the windows of the pastry shops. I love watching the French people as they go about their lives with such an extraordinary backdrop. They seem to celebrate the art of living well. I love the way they present the best food I've ever tasted. I love how they carefully wrap a little pastry as if you're being presented with a magnificent jewel. I love many places on earth, but Paris stands out as the place where I'd spend my life if I could. (Who knows..if I'm lucky, heaven might look just like Paris!)

Posted by
83 posts

Well, I think it's hard to base a decision on where to relocate simply based on visiting somewhere for a few days on vacation, you simply need to live there for a while to REALLY get to know a place.

Having said that though, I really did love Rome (crazy drivers but lovely city). :)

Also, it may seem a bit ironic since one always thinks of relocating somewhere exotic, or at least somewhere where that they don't get to visit every day, but I really do love New York city. I actually live in New Jersey but I visit NYC so often that I kind of think of it as home (again, crazy drivers notwithstanding).

Posted by
2000 posts

I certainly have not been to every great city in Europe and am not an expert, but I have been to Paris 4 times and am going again this year (that says something!). I can't stay away. It may have something to do with the fact that I have 1/2 French heritage and understand the psyche of the French people on a subliminal level. I really respond to the physical beauty of the city, and enjoy its fascinating people and the way they live.

That said though, I was overwhelmed by Venice when I went there. It is truly unbelievable -- hard to even call it a "city" -- it's more a magical fairy land! I'd have to take a little side trip from Paris each year and spend a couple of weeks there too - when I get tired of cars!

Posted by
421 posts

Well at this point in my experiences and travel having seen much of North America, England, some of france and Amsterdam I would easily have to say Paris.

But we are heading to southern france adn barcelona in june so that could change, but I highly doubt it.

I fell in LOVE with Paris!!!!

Posted by
18 posts

Now I really don't understand why my first answer was deleted. (As you can tell from Terry's first sentence, I chose Paris). Everyone else subsequently picked to same city, so what was inappropriate about my post?

Posted by
83 posts

I too was wondering why some of the posts were deleted. There didn't seem to anything offense to any of them. Hopefully it is just a "glitch" in the system.

Though there haven't been a ton of responses so far, the consensus opinion seems to be Paris (with no other city a close second apparently).

Incidentally, I happened to come across a pretty interesting book in Barnes and Noble a few months back titled simply "The Cities Book" (see link) which ranked various cities based on several criteria.

Should the tell the winner or would you like to guess?

http://www.amazon.com/Cities-Book-Journey-Through-Pictorial/dp/1741047315/ref=pd_bbs_5/102-1427229-3851366?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1175985693&sr=8-5

Posted by
18 posts

Steve,
I found this question, as well as all the answers, fascinating. If you had asked about 8 or 10 years ago, my answer would have been the same as yours-- NYC-- so that's the close second. Then I really did relocated here and never regretted it, but in the meantime, I saw Paris (with no expectations; it was never even on my list of places to go-- just happened to be one of the cheapest airfares at the time) and couln't stop going back.

As for the "why" part, it'd take a whole book to list all the great things about it, but the short answer is that Paris is like taking all the parts I love about NYC (Beaux Arts architecture, great museums, big old city) and magnified many times!

Posted by
83 posts

Fifi,

To be honest, I don't know "how" the book rates the cities, whether the criteria is more geared toward residents or tourists. I didn't read it in that much detail, I just found the concept interesting (perhaps because, like I said, it's a question I like asking myself) and kept turning the pages to see what the next city on the list was.

By the way, I'm going to make an assumption here that you speak French?

Posted by
517 posts

Vienna! I think Vienna has some advantages, especially if you are raising kids. Vienna is a very manageable size. A friend once described Vienna as a cute miniature city with little toy trains running around it. You really don't need to own a car in this town. The public transport is that good. Vienna also has oodles of cultural thrills, many of which are off the tourist radar screen. For heavens sake, there is a major Roman city (Carnuntum) being dug up less than an hour out of town! There are all kinds of historic nooks and crannies in and around the city that make you say "wow". Several cool castles are very near by. Wander around the Lobau (right across the Danube) and retrace Napolean's steps at the battle of Aspern. Vineyards and the Vienna Woods literally snuggle up against the City. The crime rate is near zero. I think Vienna is consistently rated as one of the top 3 "livable" cities in the world. Anyway, after living here for 4 years, I'm a very big booster of Vienna.

Posted by
658 posts

I have four possible places I may end my days in:

1 Marchmont Street in Bloomsbury, London ( I guess you have to be a city boy to love the hustle and bustle - it's paradise for me )

2 Banbury Road in Oxford ( sobs - I should never have left. I* love every stone of that city )

3 Delft in The Netherlands, we went there as part of our honeymoon when we were low on cash and stayed at a friends mother's. Sadly she has now passed away but we go back to Delft at least once a year. Everyone there is just so pleasant and so inwardly happy.

4 The Greek Island of Paros. It's a very different way of life there, it's totally stress free and the concept of 'time' is meaningless.

Posted by
3 posts

Wow, this is a tough one. I'm leaning to Paris because I think the city is unbelievably beautiful and I could walk without getting bored for years, and the pastries and bread...oh my! Not to mention then you are centrally located and it's easy to travel anywhere else. I really love so many cities I've been to but I might get tired of them faster. I think I need to spend more time in Tuscany before I can make my decision! Of course my daughter might not appreciate any of these answers since she has moved to Wales!!!

Posted by
311 posts

I'd have to say Florence. I love the city, the art, the food, the people. My dream is to spend a month there when I retire. #2 would be Bath or York. Both beautiful cities close enough to London to visit without too much hassle but still small enough to feel more like home.

Posted by
582 posts

Without a doubt, Salzburg!
Being a classical musician, I most likely can get work there. I know some American musicians who do work there in their orchestras. That would be my dream.
Another thing about Salzburg, it seems to be a liberal town. Very down to earth locals. When I was there, I was shocked how many locals said they or someone they know spent much time in Austin Texas, where I am from!
Maybe someday I cam make the dream of living in Salzburg come true! Also, a train trip to Vienna is easy! I love Vienna too!

Posted by
18 posts

I lived in Munich for a year as a student, and I absolutely loved it. It's big enough to be a city with events going on all the time, but it is very manageable and easy to get around with its awesome public transport system and various neighborhoods. It's also near the Alps and a great hub for visiting other parts of Europe. I also like how it's cosmopolitan and Bavarian at the same time.

Posted by
31 posts

Dubrovnik! Affordable, beautiful, great food, wonderful people.

Posted by
191 posts

After backpacking around europe for 5 weeks last year I have to say that I found Venice the most magical city, yet I think it's great to visit, not live there so if i had to live any where I think London! For many reasons because not only is London a great city you can visit so many places very easily from London, like I loved Bath and a 4 hour train ride away is Edinburgh. I loved Edinburgh! The city is great to walk in with the perfect mix of history with all the new modern conviences of a large city.

While I love Europe my heart with forever be in Canada, Vancouver has to be the most incrediable city infact it's on many top ten list (currently placed 3 in the world) as the greatest city to live in. It's one of the only cities I know that you can go sailing, skiing, and golfing all in the same day. The world will soon know how great our city is when the 2010 olympics come.

Posted by
3 posts

I've only been there once - but Paris would be the place for me. Next time I go I would like to know when and where to walk through the street markets! I'm leaving for Ireland in 2 weeks and hoping to find some there. Any suggestions? We will be doing the tour bus thing that goes from Dublin to Belfast and then a circle all around the country. I also have a disability and will be using either a cane or walker so it can't be huge :(
Thanks!

Posted by
8 posts

Here are three choices and why

Paris - well because its Paris

Cape Town - promoted as one of the most beautiful cities in the world for good reason and people are great

Darwin, Australia - Good place if you want a get away, slow pace and to dissapear. Have to love hot and humid though.

Posted by
852 posts

Since this is a pipe dream (read unlimited), I would have a permanent residence in or near Fort Davis, Texas. Reason: I'm Texan and I like small west Texas towns.
I would have a summer residence somewhere in northern New Hampshire. Reason: I have lived in NH and know what those summers are like ... compared with west Texas. (I know NH winters, too.)
I would have a european residence in Grinzing (near Vienna, Austria). Reason: I enjoy the atmosphere, local food and the dry Grüner Veltliner wine ... 1/4 liters of it at any Heuriger.
I would like a friend with a nice apartment in Paris to lend it to me at the drop of a hat ...
Dream on ...

Posted by
10 posts

I plan to live lots of places. We've already exchanged our home 6 times for fabulous free, live like a local vacations in the US and Canada. (And no, we've never had anything but wonderful experiences with respectful exchangers.) You'd be surprised who wants to come visit where you live!)

We're already considering lots of European offers for next summer. My long-term plan upon retirement is to spend six months of every year living abroad. We just returned from 2 weeks in Edinburgh (for a conference), Denmark (to visit friends from when my husband was an exchange student there) and Prague (because it's fabulous and romantic!) In every country, i just wished I had more time to see more. How wonderful it would be to have the leisure to have a home base for weekends and day trips to really get to know a country.

Posted by
689 posts

Dream place would be Venice. I love Venice. I love the quiet evenings after the day trippers and cruise ships leave. I am a mello, laid back person and Venice is my bit of perfection.

Reality? Hot Sulphur Springs, Colorado!!!! We've had a weekend home there for 7 years and it is a wonderful rural town of 637 laid back mellow type folks. It is close to touristy Winter Park and not far from ulitimate touristy Vail.

Posted by
13 posts

Edinburgh, Scotland...if you have never been there you have to go! the city is so much fun and very pretty. the people are helpful and even being there for a week i felt like i could stay there forvever.

Posted by
5780 posts

Amsterdam has always been my favorite city. What a variety of things to do. Absolutely beautiful laid back city. The Dutch have always been the most gracious and accepting people, and while I don't indulge in most of the vices the city is known for...it is nice to know that I could! Beyond that, centrally located to weekend or more around the rest of Europe.

Posted by
36 posts

Bad Homburg, Germany, is a smallish town located a short S-Bahn ride north of Frankfurt. It's been popular with tourists since Roman times due to its hot springs, and in the past was a well-known resort town, complete with casino. None of this is what lures me, but the town is pretty, charming (lots of early-20th-century buildings, with a delightful pedestrian zone, two lovely large parks, and its own stretch of forest with well-marked trails. You can walk just over a mile through the woods to the closest neighborhing town. A short bus ride up into the Taunus Mountains takes you to a Roman fort, an open-air museum park, or simply more trails through the beautiful forest. The town is large enough to have "all mod cons", and there's a lively cultural scene including frequent concerts at the lovely Protestant church. There's a castle whose grounds are used for community events. The train connects Bad Homburg with Frankfurt and thence with the rest of the world. Hoch soll sie leben!

Posted by
91 posts

somwhere in southern italy. on a cliff overlooking the sea. no cars, no super grocery stores, no billboards.

just me, my typewriter and my dog.

Posted by
4 posts

Prague--why? you have to go there to really understand! It's a great mix of old and emerging cultures. And the landscape, buildings, and people are absolutely beautiful too.

Posted by
423 posts

I just love to travel and have returned to my favorite places more than once. I think my first choice for a laid back life would be Ambergris Caye, Belize. For city life - would have to be either Sydney or Paris.

Posted by
970 posts

Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Haven't been there for almost 30 years, but the entire island struck me as a great place to both avoid obstacles and responsibilities and to avoid accumulating new ones.

Posted by
83 posts

I'd like to permanently relocate to my backpack & travel around, just like Caine in Kung Fu.. Seriously, I grew up living in different countries & continents it's something I wish I had the money to do on my own.

Posted by
31437 posts

I'd likely continue living in my present location, the beautiful Okanagan Valley. I think it's a beautiful area, the quality of life is good, and it's a perfect "home base" for travelling to other, more exotic locations. It feels like "home"!

The winters can be a bit miserable (I'm NOT a "winter sports" person!), but there's always the option of taking off to Mexico or Hawaii for a couple of weeks to take the edge off the bad weather.

That's my vote!

Posted by
219 posts

I had to think about your question for a bit. I would have to say home, Norwalk, CT. I am walking distance to the LI Sound. I love going boating, canoeing, kayaking. I love going swimming and fishing off the boat. When anchored near one of the Norwalk Islands, napping, reading, or eating cheese, delivered from France, is quite pleasant. I love visiting these Islands to beach and camp. I love to go clamming. There’s something wonderful about putting one’s hands in muck and finding delicious fresh food. I love exploring these islands w/my children: finding horseshoe crabs mating (makes the birds & bees conversation easier) and baby puffer, pipefish, shiners, crabs, and blues frolicking in the sea grass by the shoreline. The people here are nice and not as pretentious as they are in neighboring towns. It is an easy commute to NYC, my original hometown, in case I get bored w/Norwalk living. I love visiting other places and meeting wonderful people anywhere, but I also love to be home.

Posted by
710 posts

My choices are: afraid I will need to be in all these places -
Venice, Italy - 1/2 the year
San Franciso - other 1/2 of the year
and
Carpi Italy for warm vacations ovelooking the rocks (not sure of spelling - Fragiolli's?)
and
Banff/Lake Louise area for winter and spring vacations
Zermatt for Skiing and views of the Matterhorn,

Posted by
221 posts

I don't know about living there forever, but there is a charming little town in Northern Germany, Rendsburg-near a river and the Baltic Sea. It is lovely.

Posted by
48 posts

Raglan, New Zealand charming little surf spot on the Tasman Sea close to Paradise or Zihuatanejo in Mexico, I like the beach.

Posted by
20 posts

Blakely Island, Washington in the San Juan Islands about 100 miles northwest of Seattle...where I grew up...and went to school by boat each day to Orcas Island. I go back whenever I can to visit family and friends...

Posted by
6 posts

London, without a doubt. I've traveled throughout Europe & the US, and have experienced many wonderful places. But the first time I went to London I felt like I had come home. I love the hustle & bustle, the people, and the culture. I've gone back 10 or 12 times over the last 20 years and hopefully will continue to do so as often as possible.