Happy and Friendly Places/ Julia Roberts film / TSA

Have you ever been to a place where everybody seemed particularly friendly or happy? Apparently Denmark is one of the happiest places in the world, according to this article Also very happy were the people of Finland, Switzerland and New Zealand, countries that not coincidentally enjoy a high standard of living.

I have been to Denmark, although I don’t seem to remember everybody being happy. Certainly not me, as I have memories of walking up and down the streets near the railway station trying to find a hotel room, and ending up in a cheap place with a lovely view of the Sheraton. I did visit the famous and thriving hippy community at Christiania, where everybody seemed quite happy.

Of course, there is a travel book on this theme as it seems as though there are now so many travel narratives (as well as guide books) that travel books have to have some kind of a theme to them, in order to stand out from all the other books.

And on a similar theme, what about the world’s friendliest places? This survey ranked countries for their ability to welcome foreigners and found that Canada, Germany and Australia were at the top. The United Arab Emirates (not somewhere at the top of my list of places to visit) was found to be the most difficult place to make friends. I think a lot of this all depends on your attitude – when I was in my 20s, I bought one of those train passes and went all over Europe and found people to be quite friendly and welcoming.

I love films that are set in exotic locations and for that reason, my wife and I will probably go and see ‘Letters to Juliet’ which is set in Italy (looks like Sienna?) and I am also looking forward to ‘Eat, Pray, Love‘ and not just because it has Julia Roberts in it. The film is released in the US on August 13th and is set in India, Italy and Indonesia and is about a woman’s quest to find herself.

And what about unhappy people? Of course, many airports these days are places where plenty of unhappy and irate passengers can be found. However, according to this article the TSA is targeting fliers who make a big fuss at the airport, or threaten security screeners. I think this isn’t a bad idea – I have seen plenty of passengers being rude to TSA staff, airline check in staff etc, who after all are only trying to do their job. What does anyone else think?

Guest entry by Mancunian

Filed Under: Travel ideas

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  1. Brittany says:

    We took a trip to Ireland, particularly Dublin & Limerick, in high school. Granted it was St. Patrick’s Day, but everyone was very nice and friendly to us. I would love to visit again.

  2. barbara says:

    I think the TSA cracking down on what they call ‘unruly’ passengers is terrible. It means that any show of dissatisfaction or arguing with airline staff (NOT TSA itself) is repressed totally by a threat of arrest. Even if one raises one’s voice in anger they threaten you. Made me feel as if I were in Hitler’s Germany.

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