Facebook reveals world’s most social cities (infographic)

20 Jun 2012

With any luck, we’re all going on a summer holiday, and some of us may use social media to check in to cities and landmarks while we’re travelling. To mark the summer holiday season, Facebook has charted social check-ins in 25 key cities worldwide, determining the world’s most social landmarks and crowning Berlin the world’s most social city.

Facebook check-ins launched in August 2010 and data from check-ins through the site or via third-party apps was aggregated and used to rank the top landmarks and cities (excluding transport hubs, such as airports and train stations).

Across the 25 cities, seven of the top landmarks are stadiums, six are public areas, two are amusement parks, two are concert arenas and two are shopping centres.

Does that last detail surprise you? Well, it turns out social travellers are big shoppers, as malls and outdoor markets appear on 19 cities’ lists of top 10 landmarks, while check-ins in Seoul – one of the most social cities – are mostly in shopping districts, with only one entry in the top 5 – Lotte World amusement park – differing from this trend.

Festivals are a boost for summer check-ins, with Glastonbury and Lollapalooza showing the most, while sports venues prove popular, particularly in the US but also across the globe, with Eden Park in Auckland, New Zealand, the Tokyo Dome in Japan and Camp Nou in Barcelona all topping the list for their respective cities.

Franchise restaurants are also popular, with Hard Rock Cafés in Buenos Aires, Delhi and Barcelona all making an appearance, while Oslo’s top venue overall is TGI Fridays.

Predictably, warmer cities have more outdoor check-ins, while colder climates see more activity in concert halls and bars. In fact, six out of Moscow’s 10 most popular spots are bars and clubs. And it’s no surprise that rainy Dublin’s hottest spot is the O2 concert venue.

Dublin’s capital neighbours in London are seeing the same trend, with their own O2 topping the list, followed by Oxford Street, Leicester Square, Covent Garden and the Emirates Stadium, home of Arsenal football club.

Top of the social cities, however, was Berlin, with a mixture of history, culture and commerce among its top spots. Kurfürstendamm, the famous boulevard, has the most check-ins, followed by the Brandenburg Gate, another O2 arena, the KaDeWe department store and the public square at Potsdamer Platz.

Some friendly rivalry could be encouraged among city landmarks, as, in Paris, the Avenue des Champs-Élysées proved more popular than the famous Eiffel Tower, and the American Museum of Natural History in New York is beating its neighbour across Central Park, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (aka, The Met). However, neither of these venues could clock up enough check-ins to beat Times Square, Madison Square Garden, Central Park, Rockefeller Centre and the former site of the World Trade Center as the top 5 destinations in New York.

Above image from Facebook’s Social Landmarks infographic

Facebook Social Landmarks infographic

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.