The world cities database is an original product “Made by Teoalida” that you will NOT find elsewhere on internet, compiled by me since 2003 and gradually expanded over years, based on Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia, having all data from a single source guarantee a harmonized database of cities from every country of the world. May 2021 update include EVERY city in the world with population over 20,000 people.
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Source of data: Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia
I started compiling this list in 2003, independently from internet world, based on Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 2002. When I connected to internet in 2005 I abandoned this database because the internet was already providing information about city population, but seeing that other databases made by me attracted attention from businesses and web developers, I revived city database in 2015, updated existing countries and added remaining countries using Encarta 2009 and I published on my website for sale to professional use, and afterwards I gradually expanded it to include more smaller cities.
Encarta is the best encyclopedia I ever seen. I like its World Atlas, dynamic maps generated with the same engine that powered Microsoft MapPoint software, you can change map format: comprehensive, political, physical features, statistical, Earth by day, Earth at night, Tectonic, Ecoregions, Climate, temperature (January, July), precipitation (January, July, annual), population density, languages, religions, timezones, outline, the moon. There is NO other map service able to do this.
Microsoft discontinued Encarta in 2009, both CD / DVD and online version, but there are many third-party websites where you can download Microsoft Student & Encarta Encyclopedia.
I classified cities according population icons used by Encarta Encyclopedia 2009, irrespective of legal status (city, town, unincorporated community), which vary from country to country so making a single worldwide database of official “cities” excluding towns, communes, villages and other places pose major troubles, especially since few countries does not have any “city”. Having all data from a single source guarantee a harmonized database of major cities for all countries of the world.
Consequently, number of cities in each country is nearly proportional with country urban population, in average for every 800,000 people living in urban areas, there is 1 city with population over 100,000.
Database include 16948 cities classified by 7 categories according Encarta population icons:
- 295 cities over 1,000,000
- 308 cities 500,000 – 999,999
- 3101 cities 100,000 – 499,999
- 12810 cities 20,000 – 99,999
- 374 cities 5,000 – 19,999
- 46 cities 1 – 4,999
- 14 other cities
May 2021 update I completed including all over 20,000 people from all counties (first 4 categories), for the next 3 categories I included only if they are capital of country or first-level administrative divisions, or if they have an article.
Exact population is sourced from Encarta articles for each individual city (if available), or from country facts and figures at largest cities, or from dictionary. A column next to population indicate source. Year of population is also indicated, the letter after year means C = census, E = estimate. Encarta Encyclopedia 2009 provide 2007 estimates for most cities over 500,000 people, while for smaller cities it usually indicate population from last census.
Population icons do not always reflect population indicated in city article. For example some cities with icon of 1,000,000+ have population around 900,000, some cities with icon of 500,000 – 999,999 have population over 1 million. Outside Europe, Australia, Canada and United States, most cities under 100,000 do not even have article to indicate exact population.
Based on feedback from customers, I realized that most purchased city database for web development, making drop-down boxes for country > state / province / region / county > city… thus population figures are not required, but classifying cities by population is helpful to shortlist database to major cities if you need.
191 independent countries: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Federated States of Micronesia, Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, Fiji Islands, Finland, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and The Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tomé and Príncipe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Syria, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, The Bahamas, The Gambia, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Vatican City, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
Plus dependent territories.
Administrative divisions (states, regions, provinces, etc) are included for 56 of the 73 possible countries, second-level administrative divisions are included for Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, while for United States I will add in a future update.
World cities database history
Geography fascinated me since kindergarten years, studying the geographic atlases I had at home, at 6 years old I already knew all countries, capitals and other major cities. Since 1998 been writing in Microsoft Word few things such as list of countries, lists of natural features, seas, rivers, etc, and astronomy-related stuff. Sourcing data from atlases and typing on computer, but resulted database was outdated because atlases were bought when my parents were school age (1970s).
In 2003 I got from a friend a CD-ROM with Encarta Encyclopedia 2002, it was the ONLY recent geography encyclopedia I could obtain, and started in Microsoft Word what was planned to become a list of cities from all countries.
2003-2005 – I compiled list of cities of Europe, former USSR countries, Middle East and Africa. Encarta 2002 (standard version?) world atlas show only principal cities (over 20.000 people) and I wanted to include ALL them in my Excel, but to speed up work, in first stage I included only cities over 100.000 people for the big countries of Western Europe.
I connected to internet in 2005, moment in which I abandoned many childhood projects because the internet (especially Wikipedia) provided up-to-date population numbers. I migrated to other hobbies such as architecture, without finishing World Cities project as intended (to include all cities over 20,000 people from EVERY country). I still continued few childhood projects such as Car Database because it had no equivalent on internet.
2006-2007 – I added cities from China, Japan, Mexico, etc, using Encarta 2006 Premium version with World Atlas having a lot more entries, so I decided to stick on cities over 100,000+ people for the remaining countries. Then I let the city database abandoned.
In 2012 I discovered that I can make business from selling car databases to companies in automobile industry and web developers, and started publishing other databases on website. I was wondering if Word Cities (Word file) if converted to Excel, may be useful for web developers.
In 2015 I published on website a SAMPLE in Word (only Italy), with a message invited people to contact me if they wants the Word file for FREE, or Excel conversion as paid service.
Over next months I completed remaining countries from Asia, North and South America, including cities over 100,000 people, using Encarta 2009 (last Encarta).
August 2016 – first person contact me to ask for city database. An Indian wanted list of cities in Excel, I offered him to convert the Word to Excel but he was not patient and asked me to give what I currently have (the Word file).
However, I started converting it to Excel to be ready for sale when next customer is coming. I created 2 Word files, both containing all countries, LITE one containing cities over 100,000 and BIG one contain cities over 20,000 by province, plus an Excel file similar with Word BIG file, and put them for sale so people can make payment and get database emailed instantly. Also expanded the article to get more traffic from Google.
By November 2017, 5 people purchased it, and I published an update with more cities, I was planning to add even more cities if sales improve, but they remained low.
Since late 2019 traffic on this particular page (and sales) started rising, reviving my interest in this project. In October 2019 I added a 3-million city database from a friend. The 3-million city database did not got a single sale as May 2020, while the original Encarta-based database with 8000 cities got 6 sales during 1 month of May 2020. Conclusion: more cities does NOT mean more sales. In March 2020 also I added a poll so people can vote what they needs.
Despite of customers’ lack of interest in more cities, I published a new update in June 2020 with 2000 more cities, completing Western Europe in terms of 20,000 – 100,000 cities. It looked awful to have 369 cities from Poland (all cities over 20,000) and only 39 cities from France (only cities over 100,000). I added 1 more column beside population that indicate where I sourced population from, previously the cities having population taken from other source than city article had a note in ( ) in city name column (may have posed a problem for programmers who bought this database for web development), I also added 4 columns that allow easy filtering of database and show country capitals only, capitals of states / regions / provinces, top 5 cities by country, etc, so I can sell multiple Excel packages at various prices.
By end-2020 over 30 people purchased. Strangely 90% customers just made payment and downloaded file without any communication with me, while 90% people contacting me did not turned into customers. Along people who contacted me, were some asking for free databases (disrespecting my efforts) or some willing to pay but wanted additional data that I could not offer (example: few wanted neighborhoods, or even list of streets in each city, or asked things completely offtopic: one idiot asked for phone numbers from a particular CITY) but also people who wanted a simple database of cities sorted by country and state, which is exactly what I offer but for unknown reasons they never purchased. Without feedback from actual customers who purchased, I risk to not take right decisions at future database updates. I only suspect that most of my customers were programmers and web developers.
Depending by number of sales and feedback from customers, I may add 20,000 – 100,000 cities for remaining countries too.
A new update started in March 2021, added ~1000 more cities from Latin America, reached 12,700+ cities, next week did the same for China, India, etc.
May 2021, added ~1600 cities from United States, reaching final figure of… TBA
Also GPS coordinates using a script that input city and country name in gps-coordinates.net and copy-paste coordinates automatically (may sound LAME but I didn’t knew other way to do faster).
3 million cities, towns and villages, all with latitude and longitude
One of my programmer partners has shared with me a HUGE world city database with over 3 million rows in CSV format, with permission to sell via my website.
The database include 3,173,958 lines from 234 countries. Each row include GPS coordinates. 47980 lines include also city population. The remaining lines we can assume that are towns, villages or other insignificant places so that is why population is not known.
There is a column “Region” that shows a number, I believe that this was relational with another file Region ID + Region Name but my programmer don’t have that other file. How he obtained this file without other file remains a mystery. I counted about 3700 countries / region combinations, in theory I can region IDs with actual names myself, is just a matter of time.
Excel can display max 1,048,576 rows, consequently I had to split CSV file into 4 sheets to be displayed in Excel, where I added borders and colors to match the style of other databases “Made by Teoalida” and made a statistics sheet with formulas to count number of cities by country. Feel free to combine them, or I can give original CSV file if you want to import in a SQL database or whatever…
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Another world city database
In November 2017 one customer gave me his world city database in exchange of a database made by me, with permission to resell it on my website.
This world city database contains 76,799 cities, sorted by 212 countries, 51 US states, 13 Canadian provinces, 4 UK countries. For other countries it do not contain administrative divisions. The database focus primarily on United States, as it contains 43,299 cities from US compared with 33,500 cities from rest of world. Price: 1 dollar per 1000 cities.
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Other geography stuff
In 1998-2003 I also wrote lists of natural features, seas, rivers, etc, and astronomy-related stuff…. all in Word. I started using Excel more than Word in 2003. Today I consider them useless because such info exist for FREE on Wikipedia and is not necessary to make my own databases.
Romania city population .XLS – I made this originally in 1999 in Word sourcing data from books then remade in 2006 in Excel format sourcing data from Wikipedia pages of each city (hours of work!). It does contains all 320 cities of Romania with their population at every census from 1912 to 2011 (next census probably in 2020) except when they did not had city status at the census year. I offered it for free download until 2018 when I updated-expanded file to include 2861 communes beside cities, but without population, and GPS coordinates for both cities and communes, now selling at 20 euro for this effort. Why Romania? Because here I was born.
United States city population .XLS – including 304 cities with over 100.000 inhabitants. Source of data: Wikipedia, copy-pasted in Excel and enhanced visually. Contains population at 2010 census, 2015 estimate, as well as area, density and GPS coordinates, latitude and longitude.
Does anyone know where I can find a complete list of US counties and cities? I do not really need download-able format, you can tell me a website where I can extract data from using an automated script.
Free data from government
Most countries provide open data for free download on their government / census websites, example:
https://www.istat.it/it/archivio/156224 – list of communes in Italy.
https://www.destatis.de/DE/Themen/Laender-Regionen/Regionales/Gemeindeverzeichnis/Administrativ/05-staedte.html Deutchland Städte nach Fläche, Bevölkerung – list of 2058 cities in Germany.
http://censusindia.gov.in/Tables_Published/Admin_Units/admin.html – List of Towns in India – 5161 towns.
Some governments may provide also ZIP codes or PIN codes for free. geodatasource
Now, my plan is to take open data from government websites (or scrap from Wikipedia for countries where there is no data available from government), compile all countries into a single database and offer it as paid download for efforts of compiling. With ~200 countries in the world, this may be a huge effort. Census year vary from country to country so I will probably not include city population. Next problem is that, if I stick database to cities only, Romania would have 320 cities but Italy will have 0. If I include 7954 communes of Italy, I will probably need to include also the 2861 communes of Romania and not just 320 cities. If anyone is interested in this project, or have suggestions how to make it better, please contact me!
For example: Romania have officially 103 municipalities and 217 towns, but my database include 116 cities that have icon of 20,000+ population in Encarta Encyclopedia. Germany have 2058 “towns”, Italy have 7954 “communes”, Spain have 8122 “municipalities”. Italy and Spain do not have “city” or “town” designation. If I would source data from census websites of each country, or Wikipedia, harmonizing all countries into a single database would be a HELL.