Imam Square, Isfahan, Iran - One of the most breathtaking squares in the world. Period. Photo by Dieter Zirnig.
Mbare Market, Harare, Zimbabwe - You can find it all here—vegetables, plumbing supplies, thumb pianos, ceremonial herbs, you name it. Photo by Shack Dwellers International.
Luxembourg Gardens, Paris, France - A surprisingly small park with a wealth of things to do—sail toy boats, eat crepes, watch the world pass by. This is the gold standard by which to measure urban parks. Photo by Phillip Capper.
Plaza Julio Cortazar, Buenos Aires, Argentina - A square surrounded by cafés and art galleries in one of the most interesting neighborhoods in the world—Palermo Viejo. Photo by Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires.
Pearl District, Portland, Oregon - An almost new neighborhood on vacant land downtown that shows we can still build great communities. Photo by Steven Vance.
Taos Pueblo, Taos, New Mexico - A high-rise adobe town that’s been home to Native Americans since at least the 1500s. Photo by Robin Kanouse.
The Plateau, Montreal, Canada - A picturesque working-class quarter transformed into the artistic and cultural hotbed of Quebec. Photo by Daniel Roy.
O'Connell Street, Ennis, Ireland - A world-class small town main street that teems with activity all hours of the day. Photo by Jim Moran.
The Prado, Havana, Cuba - A marvelous 10-block promenade through Old Havana. Photo by Tony Hisgett.
Campus Martius, Detroit, Michigan - A new city square animated by a sidewalk café, music performances, ice skating and public art, which helped bring people and economic development back downtown. Photo by Andre Kirchner.
Bleecker Street, New York City - Once the undisputed capital of American Bohemia, this street is still a wonder to stroll with one-of-a kind small shops and inviting cafés. Along with San Francisco’s North Beach, this is the birthplace of coffee shops in the U.S. Photo by Paul VanDerWerf.
Cai Rang Floating Market, Cai Thao, Vietnam - Just like it sounds—vendors sell food, flowers and everything else from boats in the Mekong River. Photo by Gavin White.
Country Club Plaza, Kansas City, Missouri - The world’s first (1922) and probably best shopping center. It proves you can accommodate the automobile without sacrificing pedestrian amenities. Photo by Judy Baxter.
French Quarter, New Orleans, Louisiana - Colonial Spanish architecture, great local food and music. A thriving testament to the principle that old neighborhoods are a city’s best asset. Photo by Peter Eimon.
Grand Central Station, New York City - A palace of a train station—the number one meeting place in North America. Even the lowest-paid worker feels like a king catching a subway or a commuter train in this beautiful place. Photo by Derrick Story.
Fez Souk, Fez, Morocco - Souks (street markets) are the classic form of public space throughout the Arab World. The Fez souk is a glorious maze that you’ll be delighted to become lost in. Photo by Jason Jones.
Moscow Subway, Moscow, Russia - The stations are works of art in themselves with marble, chandeliers, and stunning art deco designs.
Granville Island, Vancouver, Canada - An industrial wasteland revived in the 1970s through the creation of parks, arts institutions and a fabulous public market. Photo by Lance McCord.
Balboa Park, San Diego, California - An oasis of tropical nature in the midst of a busy city, this splendid city park is home of the internationally known San Diego Zoo. Photo by Kansas Sebastian.
Covent Garden, London, England - A market hall surrounded by bustling pedestrian streets, Covent Gardens is one of the world’s leading venues for street performers as well as opera productions. Photo by Chris Hill.