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The 20 Largest Cities in the World: 2021 Edition

The 20 Largest Cities in the World: 2021 Edition

According to the United Nationslatest report on populations in cities, by 2030, “urban areas are projected to house 60 percent of people globally and one in every three people will live in cities with at least half a million inhabitants”. Growing in both size and number, cities are hubs of government, commerce, and transportation, and in 2021, the world’s 20 largest cities are home to half a billion people. In fact, one in five people worldwide lives in a city with more than 1 million inhabitants.

Below, we have rounded up the top 20 megacities in the world of 2021, according to the number of people that live in their metropolitan area. While Tokyo is the largest city on a global level, with a total of more than 37 million residents, the majority of the most populous cities in the world are in the two most populated countries, China and India. Among these, we have 5 metropolises in China, Shanghai, Beijing, Chongqing, Tianjin, and Guangzhou, and 3 in India, Delhi, Mumbai, and Kolkata. The largest city in the American continent is Sao Paulo in Brazil with 22 million people, followed by Mexico City and Buenos Aires in Argentina. Istanbul takes the 13th position with one part of the city lying in Europe and the other part in Asia.

Beijing. Image via ShutterstockGuangzhou. Image via ShutterstockBuenos Aires. Image via ShutterstockMumbai. Image via Shutterstock+ 21

Read on below for the full results.

1- Tokyo, Japan

Population: 37,339,804

Tokyo. Image via Shutterstock
Tokyo. Image via Shutterstock

2- Delhi, India

Population: 31,181,376

Delhi. Image via Shutterstock
Delhi. Image via Shutterstock

3- Shanghai, China

Population: 27,795,702

Shanghai. Image via Shutterstock
Shanghai. Image via Shutterstock

4- Sao Paulo, Brazil

Population: 22,237,472

Sao Paulo. Image via Shutterstock
Sao Paulo. Image via Shutterstock

5- Mexico City, Mexico

Population: 21,918,936

Mexico. Image via Shutterstock
Mexico. Image via Shutterstock

6- Dhaka, Bangladesh

Population: 21,741,090

Dhaka. Image via Shutterstock
Dhaka. Image via Shutterstock

7- Cairo, Egypt

Population: 21,322,750

Cairo By Prin Adulyatham. Image via Shutterstock
Cairo By Prin Adulyatham. Image via Shutterstock

8- Beijing, China

Population: 20,896,820

Beijing. Image via Shutterstock
Beijing. Image via Shutterstock

9- Mumbai, India

Population: 20,667,656

Mumbai. Image via Shutterstock
Mumbai. Image via Shutterstock

10- Osaka, Japan

Population: 19,110,616

Osaka. Image via Shutterstock
Osaka. Image via Shutterstock

11- Karachi, Pakistan

Population: 16,459,472

Karachi By ibrar.kunri. Image via Shutterstock
Karachi By ibrar.kunri. Image via Shutterstock

12- Chongqing, China

Population: 16,382,376

Chongqing By zhangyuqiu. Image via Shutterstock
Chongqing By zhangyuqiu. Image via Shutterstock

13- Istanbul, Turkey

Population: 15,415,197

Istanbul By kukuruxa. Image via Shutterstock
Istanbul By kukuruxa. Image via Shutterstock

14- Buenos Aires, Argentina

Population: 15,257,673

Buenos Aires. Image via Shutterstock
Buenos Aires. Image via Shutterstock

15- Kolkata, India

Population: 14,974,073

Kolkata. Image via Shutterstock
Kolkata. Image via Shutterstock

16- Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo

Population: 14,970,460

Kinshasa  By Issa Kashala. Image via Shutterstock
Kinshasa By Issa Kashala. Image via Shutterstock

17- Lagos, Nigeria

Population: 14,862,111

Lagos By Tayvay. Image via Shutterstock
Lagos By Tayvay. Image via Shutterstock

18- Manila, Philippines

Population: 14, 158,573

Manila By KieferPix. Image via Shutterstock
Manila By KieferPix. Image via Shutterstock

19- Tianjin, China

Population: 13,794,450

Tianjin By chuyuss. Image via Shutterstock
Tianjin By chuyuss. Image via Shutterstock

20- Guangzhou, China

Population: 13,635,397

Guangzhou. Image via Shutterstock
Guangzhou. Image via Shutterstock

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About this author
Cite: Christele Harrouk. "The 20 Largest Cities in the World: 2021 Edition" 21 Apr 2021. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/906605/the-20-largest-cities-in-the-world-of-2018> ISSN 0719-8884
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Tokyo By ESB Professional. Image via Shutterstock

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