The Netherlands ranks fifth happiest country in the world (and we couldn’t be more proud)

Someone call Pharell Williams because we’re happy! The 2023 World Happiness Report finds that the land of bikes and canals ranks as the fifth happiest country in the world. 

Although this might seem obvious during the annual Koningsdag (King’s day) festivities or during the tulip season, we’re proud to see it on paper once again! 🎉

Let’s talk about the World Happiness Report

So how did the Netherlands end up on the podium? The report takes into account a list of measures to evaluate the final ranking of each country’s happiness levels. They look at:

  • Freedom in making life choices
  • Social support within communities
  • Levels of corruption in governments
  • The physical health of citizens
  • Generosity within communities
  • Average living standards (GDP per capita)

READ MORE | Amsterdam among the BEST world destinations for tourists last year (and we’re not surprised)

The World Happiness Report is compiled every year in the United States based on surveys conducted by the Gallup Institute. 

How did other countries do?

Happiness rankingCountry
5The Netherlands ✨
7 Norway
8 Switzerland
10New Zealand

Finland ranks as the happiest country in the world for the sixth year in a row. The Finnish are followed by the Danes and Iceland at the top of the list.

READ MORE | The Netherlands is officially one of the best countries to work abroad! (Except it’s too damn expensive)

Sadly, Afghanistan and Lebanon are ranked as the two least happy countries in the world in 2023. Both countries’ citizens have experienced civil unrest in the past years. 

Powering through the coronavirus pandemic

The scientists compiling the report say that the people of the world have proved “remarkably resilient” throughout the past three years.

Global pandemic aside, they noted that global happiness levels actually haven’t dropped lower than the pre-coronavirus years of 2017 – 2019. 

Somehow we’ve made it through the lockdowns, curfews, weekly press conferences, and anxious return to “normal life” with the same level of happiness. 

All in all, we can proudly say that the Dutchies are thriving on stroopwafel, boterhammen, and good vibes — and we internationals are happy to join in.

What do you think about this year’s ranking? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Naomi Lamaury
Naomi Lamaury
Naomi came to the Netherlands four years ago for her studies with two suitcases and without ever having been to the country or knowing much about it. Now, you can find her eating ‘bitterballen’ and fighting against the Dutch wind on her bike every day like a local. Naomi enjoys writing about what is going on around her alongside a warm cup of coffee.


  1. Well, I’m even more proud 🦚 on The Netherlands, because I (personally) see The Netherlands in the fourth place…nothing against Israel, but I can’t see Israel be higher than The Netherlands.


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