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The most peaceful nations in the world? New results: Norway, Iceland, New Zealand, Austria and Japan


Who doesn’t want a peaceful vacation?

From the peaceful country with the Nobel Peace Prize Center
Lisa TE Sonne (c)

The latest results of the Global Peace Index (GPI) were announced yesterday, and there could be much worse ways to choose a travel destination for relaxation. As an Initiative of the Institute for Economics and Peace, 149 countries were ranked according to how peaceful they are.

Determining factors for peace in the study tended more toward the numbers of homicides, weapons, and incarcerated people  rather than the  numbers of culture and nature hot spots.. Still ---what a great way to advocate peace: Spend vacation money in a country that exemplifies peace!

The top five “most peaceful” nations in order according to the GPI: New Zealand, Iceland, Japan, Austria and Norway.

The United States ranked #85, slipping two spots from last year.  Bottom rankings were Iraq, Somalia, Afghanistan and Sudan.

It should be noted that the GPI was created by an international technology entrepreneur and philanthropist who is Australian: Steve Killelea. Some would say that explains why New Zealand is number one. Those who have been there may say it makes sense all around.

According to the website,  the list of endorsers of the Index is wide-ranging and includes Sir Richard Branson, Jane Goodall, His Holiness the Dali Lama, President Jimmy Carter, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Amnesty International.

A coded Peace map provides a colorful view of peace distribution and rankings in the world per the latest GPI.

You can also check out the full report from the Human Security Report project including the 23 determining factors used, sources, and methodologies.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding.”

What better way to understand a country than to spend time there? I recently enjoyed a memorable week fiord hopping up the gorgeous coast of Norway on the Hurtigrutan Cruise line. What a great country and people. From the Northern Lights to the composing hut of Grieg, from the Nobel Peace Center to the Thor Heyerdahl exploration museum, and from colorful fishing villages to Oslo's Resistance Museum and Vigelund Sculpture park— people everywhere had smiles and kindnesses to share.

Mother Teresa said, “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”

Travelling is one of the most enriching ways for humanity to “belong to each other.”

I hope your vacations and journeys are full of peace.

Article and Photos (C) Lisa TE Sonne, For more:


  • Shari Cohen 5 years ago

    Another interesting article from an author who experiences personally- people and events around the world. I look forward to reading about Lisa's next travel adventure.

  • Lauren Vaughn 5 years ago

    What a great article! Lisa focused on two important aspects of enriching the human experience--travel and peace. I, too, look forward to reading more from Lisa's adventure's and wise perspective.

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