While some travelers are looking to get back to nature, others have a passion for civilization at its finest. Technologically advanced cities now exist in all four corners of the globe, providing many options for the tech-minded or just plain curious. While Tokyo, Hong Kong, San Francisco and Silicon Valley may immediately spring to mind, many other cities now qualify as influential technological centers. Here are five of the most technologically advanced cities to visit as selected by the team at AirportPreCheck.org. Even the most tech-savvy travelers may be surprised to learn about some of these cities.
Singapore has been declared the world’s “smartest” city. The title is mostly due to the tiny city-state’s development and implementation of state-of-the-art urban infrastructure. For example, sensors placed throughout the city can detect littering and unauthorized smoking, while radio frequency identification cards keep crossing lights lit up for seniors and residents with disabilities. The city’s many sensors collect anonymous data in order to obtain a real-time portrait of the city. The government uses this collected data to run virtual tests of new urban planning programs to see how they may improve the lives of residents and visitors. The team at AirportPreCheck.org suggests stopping by Singapore’s Gardens by the Bay. The gardens meld the traditional greenspace of a botanical garden with innovative design and sustainable technology.
The capital of Sweden offers tons of history, including museums and Viking history walking tours, along with technological tourism. In addition to holding the titles of “Wireless Valley” and the “startup capital of Europe,” Stockholm is also considered one of the greenest cities in the world. The city’s environmental planning programs began all the way back in the 1970s. By 2050, Stockholm expects to be completely free from fossil fuels. The city is connected by the world’s most extensive fiber-optic network, which includes most of Stockholm’s businesses and all of its public housing units.
“Chilecon Valley” is a relatively new arrival among the most technologically advanced cities in the world. Recently, Chile’s government created the publicly funded accelerator program Start-Up Chile. The program provides funds, resources and visas for carefully chosen foreigner entrepreneurs to start companies in Santiago’s budding technological industry. This tech industry has blended with Chile’s hospitable culture to create a globally recognized center of entrepreneurship. Additionally, Santiago boasts the most cutting-edge public transportation system in all of Latin America. The team at AirportPreCheck.org recommends Santiago to travelers looking for a little natural beauty in a tech-oriented getaway, as Chile is optimally situated between a gorgeous coastline and incredible mountains.
Barcelona is another city that combines smart technology with effective green initiatives. Traditionally known for its art, culture and history, Barcelona has recently expanded its city-planning programs. Traffic sensors throughout the city help to reduce traffic problems, conserve energy and monitor air quality. Barcelona’s recent experiences with drought conditions inspired city planners to develop smart technology that uses data collection and projection to conserve public water use. The city’s sustainability projects include smart LED lighting and carbon-reduction measures. Residents and tourists alike have access to free public WiFi.
Seoul, South Korea
Once a relatively impoverished city, South Korea’s capital has quickly grown into an incredibly advanced global hotspot for technology and culture. Seoul is known as a “smart city” that uses the latest technology to assist residents and visitors alike. GPS data from cabs provides people with an up-to-the-minute portrait of traffic conditions, while streetlights actually provide free public WiFi access. The city even provides its low-income residents with second-hand smart devices. The team at AirportPreCheck.org recommends seeing Digital Media City, a cutting-edge complex of tech businesses, cultural centers and living spaces built on the site of a former landfill in 2002.