Happiness is hard to measure, but one project at the United Nations has been trying to figure it out. Since 2012, the U.N. Sustainable Development Solutions Network has put out its World Happiness Report. This is a study that looks at the links between happiness and development and encourages policymakers to put more emphasis on happiness.
About 1,000 people in each U.N. member state rate their quality of life on a scale from 0 to 10, while researchers look at data from six areas: GDP per capita, life expectancy, social support, generosity, trust, a sense of being free to make choices in life, and a lack of corruption. The World Happiness Report 2022 was just released, and while the results are similar to what we’ve seen before (every Nordic country made the list), COVID-19 makes the list a little more interesting. The report paid special attention to how different governments have helped their people be happy before, during, and likely after the pandemic.

Read on for a list of the 10 happiest countries in the world—and who knows? Maybe just thinking about going to these countries will make you feel happier.

List of Happiest Countries around the World in 2022

10. Sweden

Happiest Countries around the World
Photo: Collected

Sweden, which is in the north of Europe, is one of the happiest places in the world.

Sweden, which is also called the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Nordic country in Northern Europe. It is on the Scandinavian Peninsula. Sweden shares borders with Norway and Finland, and a bridge tunnel across the Oresund connects it to Denmark.

  • Score: 7.3 for happiness with life (5th)
  • Employment rate: 73% (5th highest)
  • 79% said they were in good health (9th highest)
  • 1.28 % of employees work long hours (3rd lowest)
  • Disposable income: $26,633 (11th highest)
  • 86% of people have finished school (9th highest)
  • Expected life span: 81.5 years (7th highest)

9. Luxembourg

Happiest Countries around the World
Photo Credit: Sofitel

Luxembourg, which is also known as the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, is a country in western Europe that is surrounded by Belgium, France, and Germany. It has two main areas: the Oesling, which is part of the Ardennes massif and is in the north, and the Gutland, which means “good country” and is in the south.

When you live in the richest country in the world, you can’t help but smile. This small European country is landlocked and has an army of 800 people (yes, 800). They don’t have a navy or an air force, but they can buy one military cargo plane with the help of Belgium. Don’t let the US win!

The Guinness Book of World Records says that Luxembourg is the country where each person drinks the most alcohol of any country in the world.

8. Canada

Canada is one of the places where people are the happiest.
Canada is a country in North America. There are 3 territories and 10 provinces in it. It is in the north of the continent and goes from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west and then north to the Arctic Ocean. Canada is the second-largest country in the world in terms of land area, and its land border with the United States is the longest land border in the world.

  • 7.4 for happiness with life (tied for 4th)
  • Employment rate: 72% (7th highest)
  • 88% said they were in good health (3rd highest)
  • 3.91 % of employees work long hours (11th highest)
  • Disposable income: $27,138 (8th highest)
  • 88% of people have finished school (5th highest)
  • Expected life span: 80.8 years (13th highest)
  • See also: Canada’s Top 10 Best Places to Visit.

7. Australia

Australia, which is officially called the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere. It is made up of the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and many smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It has the sixth-largest land area in the world. Indonesia, East Timor, and Papua New Guinea are nearby countries to the north, while the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and New Caledonia are to the north-east and New Zealand is to the south-east.

  • 7.4 for happiness with life (tied for 4th)
  • Employment rate: 72% (9th highest)
  • 85% said they were in good health (5th highest)
  • 13.99% of employees work long hours (4th highest)
  • Disposable income: $26,927 (9th highest)
  • 71% of people have finished school (12th lowest)
  • Expected life span: 81.8 years (5th highest)
  • See also: 10 things to do when you plan a trip to Australia.

6. Finland

Finland, which is officially called the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country in Northern Europe. It is in the Fennoscandian region. Sweden is to the west, Norway is to the north, and Russia is to the east. Estonia is to the south of Finland, across the Gulf of Finland.

  • 7.4 for happiness with life (tied for 4th)
  • Employment rate: 68% (14th highest)
  • 68% said they were in good health (15th lowest)
  • 3.66 % of employees work long hours (8th highest)
  • Disposable income: $24,958 (14th highest)
  • 82% of people have finished school (14th highest)
  • Expected life span: 80,2 years (16th lowest)

5. Austria

Austria, which is also called the Republic of Austria, is a landlocked country in Central Europe with about 8.47 million people. It shares borders with the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Hungary, and Slovakia to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west.

  • 7.5 for happiness with life (tied for 3rd)
  • Employment rate: 72% (8th highest)
  • 69% said they were in good health (17th lowest)
  • 9.02% of employees work long hours (10th highest)
  • Disposable income: $27,541 (7th highest)
  • 82% of people have finished school (13th highest)
  • Expected years to live: 80.7 (22nd lowest)
  • See also: Austria’s Top 10 Best Places to Visit.

4. Switzerland

Switzerland is a federal republic made up of 26 cantons. The federal government is based in Bern. The country is in western Europe. To the north, it borders Germany. To the west, it borders France. To the south, it borders Italy. To the east, it borders Austria and Liechtenstein.

  • 7.5 for happiness with life (tied for 3rd)
  • Employment rate: 79% (1st highest)
  • 87% said they were in good health (4th highest)
  • 5.87% of employees work long hours (17th highest)
  • Disposable income: $27,756 (5th most)
  • Expected years to live: 82.6 (2nd highest)
  • See also the list of the 10 most beautiful drives in Europe.

3. Netherlands

The Netherlands is one of the countries that make up the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It is mostly in North-West Europe, but there are a few islands in the Caribbean as well. The North Sea is to the north and west, Belgium is to the south, and Germany is to the east. Belgium, Germany, and the United Kingdom all have maritime borders with the Netherlands. It is set up as a unitary state with a parliamentary democracy. Amsterdam is the country’s capital, and The Hague is where the government is based. People often call the whole country of the Netherlands “Holland,” even though North and South Holland are only two of its twelve provinces.

  • 7.5 for happiness with life (tied for 3rd)
  • Employment rate: 75% (3rd highest)
  • 77% said they were in good health (11th highest)
  • 0.68% of workers put in long hours (2nd highest)
  • Disposable income: $25,740 (13th highest)
  • 73% of people have finished school (15th lowest)
  • Expected years to live: 80.8 (14th highest)
  • See also: 10 of the world’s most amazing places.

2. Norway

The official name of Norway is the Kingdom of Norway. It is a Nordic unitary constitutional monarchy that includes the western part of the Scandinavian Peninsula, the island of Jan Mayen, the archipelago of Svalbard in the Arctic, and the subantarctic island of Bouvet. Norway is about 385,252 square kilometers (148,747 square miles) big and has about 5 million people living there. It has the second-fewest people per square mile in all of Europe.

  • 7.6 for happiness with life (2nd)
  • Employment rate: 75% (4th highest)
  • 80% said they were in good health (8th highest)
  • 2.66 percent of workers put in long hours (5th highest)
  • Disposable income: $30,465 (5th highest)
  • 81% of people have finished school (15th highest)
  • Expected life span: 81.2 (10th highest)

1. Denmark

Happiest Countries around the World
Photo Credit: fiftydegreesnorth.com

Denmark, which is also known as the Kingdom of Denmark, is at the top of the list of the happiest countries. It is a sovereign state in Northern Europe, and the Faroe Islands and Greenland, both of which are in other parts of the world, are also important parts of the kingdom. Denmark is the most southern of the Nordic countries. It is southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and it shares a border with Germany to the south.

The country is made up of a large peninsula called Jutland and a lot of islands. The main islands are Zealand, Funen, Lolland, Falster, and Bornholm. There are also a lot of smaller islands that are often called the Danish Archipelago.

  • 7.8 for happiness with life (1st)
  • Employment rate: 73% (6th highest)
  • 71% said they were in good health (17th highest)
  • 1.92 percent of workers put in long hours (4th highest)
  • Disposable income: $23,213 (15th lowest)
  • 76% of people have finished school (18th lowest)
  • Expected life span: 79.3 (11th lowest)

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