10 Years of Blog Archive

Monday, August 08, 2011

Is Cuenca Ecuador the Best City in the World to Live?

In 2009 Cuenca Ecuador was named the best retirement haven in the world and in 2010 it was named the best city to live in the world, according to International Living. So how does International Living come up with their consensus on the best places to retire and live? Well, they send their own people into the cities that have not yet been discovered and they research the area based on the cost of living, weather, culture, crime, healthcare system, etc.

We think it's true what they say about Cuenca. It is a beautiful city full of history, wonderful people, good food, and the cost for rentals and real estate is great if you don't allow yourself to be targeted as a Gringo with lots of money to spend. You can buy so much more with your dollar here in Ecuador. But understand too, some things are just as expensive or more expensive than in North America. Autos for instance are very expensive here, as are electronics, and anything that is imported.

The truth is a lot of people come here and visit for a month and leave never to return because they can't find Skippy peanut butter or their brand of beef hotdogs on the store shelves, or because they don't like living in a home that is behind security bars, or because it just isn't up to their standards. It is best to come here and live for at least a year or two and then decide if it is a place you would like to live and retire.

Is Cuenca Really the Best Place to Retire?

No one, including a big name travel magazine such as International Living can make such a bold statement as to decide for someone else the best place to live and retire. It depends on you and what you feel you need to be happy and free. We concur that Cuenca is a great place to bring your family and live, but you may not agree.

We chose Cuenca for our purpose and motivation. Your motivation may not be the same as ours. The people that come to Cuenca to live and stay are people who become a part of this country rather than remain indifferent to it. If you allow the laid back lifestyle or the different ways that people do things here to discourage you then you will remain indifferent to living here and never truly feel comfortable being here.

Lots of North Americans and Europeans are thinking about moving here, or are already in Cuenca and becoming acquainted with living here. Some gringos will fall in love with the beauty of Cuenca and others will leave and never return, it all depends on what your motivation is and what you feel your needs are to be happy and free. The ones that stay will most likely agree with International Living Magazine, Cuenca is the best city to live in the world. By the way, International Living is now touting Nicaragua as a bargain place to live.


  1. Thanks for your insight. Having lived in Mexico for 7 years, I want to try living in Cuenca. It sounds delightful. Thank you for your input and information.


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