Top 10 Countries with the Best National Flag

The top ten best country flags, based on the meaning, design, and how attractive it looks.
The Top Ten
1 United States The national flag of the United States, commonly referred to as the Stars and Stripes or the American flag, consists of thirteen horizontal stripes alternating between red and white. In the canton (top left corner), there is a blue rectangle with fifty small, white, five-pointed stars arranged in nine rows. The stars represent the fifty states of the United States, while the stripes symbolize the original thirteen colonies and the ideals of valor, purity, and justice.

I have no bias here, even though I am American. I just genuinely believe that the American flag is beautiful. It is visually pleasing and looks pretty unique, although it does look awfully similar to an Asian country's flag - though I think this is probably a coincidence. The flag is also full of meaning and history, which is always a plus in a nation's flag. In my opinion, it's tied with the Union Jack of Great Britain, which is also beautiful and full of meaning and history, for the title of the best flags in the world. However, you should all have pride in your nation's flag. No one is better, as it's all about history when you think of flags.

2 Turkey The national flag of Turkey features a vertical rectangular design with a red background. In the center, there is a white star and crescent placed side by side, both facing to the right. The star and crescent are also known as the "crescent and star." The red background symbolizes valor and bravery, while the white star and crescent represent Islam and are associated with the Ottoman Empire.

When you look at this flag, you can see how beautiful it is by its design and the meaning of its symbols. The white moon tells us about purity and freedom, the star about victory, and the red color represents the blood of those who battled and died protecting this beautiful country that is Turkey. For me, this is a truly heroic and meaningful flag that speaks about its country's history and the bravery of its people.

It reminds both Turkish and non-Turkish people how Turkey was formed and what sacrifices were made. The symbols given by the sky show that the universe supports those who are bold and brave. The idea of the flag came on a dark night, where the casualties of Turkish soldiers formed a pond of blood. In this pond, the flamboyant moon and star were reflected. The Turkish flag represents the power of belief, courage, unity, and faith.

3 United Kingdom The national flag of the United Kingdom, commonly known as the Union Jack, combines the flags of England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. It consists of a blue field with the flag of St. George (a red cross on a white background) representing England, a white diagonal cross on a blue field (the flag of St. Andrew) representing Scotland, and a red diagonal cross on a white field (the flag of St. Patrick) representing Northern Ireland. The Union Jack represents the unity of these constituent countries within the United Kingdom.

The Union Jack (potential pedants please note that it is still called the Union Jack when not on a ship. If you disagree, please do some actual research rather than repeating what was said to you in a pub). The flag adheres to good vexillological rules of three bold colors and has a very pleasing and balanced asymmetry (wide-wide up at the hoist, or it is upside down!). It is among the best flags due to a level of brand awareness possibly only shared with the Stars & Stripes. Change the colors or change it to black & white, or even put just one half of it on a t-shirt or bag, it is STILL recognizable. This would not work with most other flags unless they had a complex symbol. By the way, if Scotland becomes independent, it will still exist. The first Union Flag existed from 1606 to the political union in 1707 because the countries shared the same monarch from 1603 and will continue to do so.

4 India The national flag of India is a horizontal tricolor with saffron at the top, white in the middle, and green at the bottom. In the center of the white stripe, there is a navy blue wheel with 24 spokes known as the Ashoka Chakra. The saffron stripe represents courage and sacrifice, the white stripe signifies purity and truth, and the green stripe symbolizes fertility, growth, and auspiciousness. The Ashoka Chakra represents the eternal wheel of law.

Bhagwa, or the saffron color, denotes renunciation or disinterestedness. Our leaders must be indifferent to material gains and dedicate themselves to their work. The white in the center represents light, the path of truth to guide our conduct. The green symbolizes our relation to the soil and to plant life, upon which all other life depends.

The "Ashoka Chakra" in the center of the white is the wheel of the law of dharma. Truth, or satya, and dharma, or virtue, should be the controlling principles for those who work under this flag. Furthermore, the wheel denotes motion. There is death in stagnation and life in movement. India should not resist change. It must move and go forward. The wheel represents the dynamism of peaceful change.

5 Canada The national flag of Canada, often referred to as the Maple Leaf, consists of a red field with a white square in the center. Inside the white square, there is a red, stylized, eleven-pointed maple leaf. The red color represents Canadian heritage and sacrifice, while the maple leaf is a symbol of national identity and unity. The flag was adopted in 1965 and replaced the previous flag, which had the Union Jack in the canton and the Canadian coat of arms in the fly.

It's all about Canada: not the history or even the people, but the glorious beauty of thousands of miles that fortunate people from all over the world have traveled to in the past, the present, and the future to escape persecution and inequality based on economics, religion, social customs, sexual preferences, gender, or political beliefs. The flag symbolizes the maple tree in the autumn, when its leaves change colors - they are magnificent to behold. It inspires Canadians to remember that all of us matter, not just the few in power. There are no crowns, religious symbols, or historical marks to mar it. It's pure nature and the strength it gives us.

6 Brazil The national flag of Brazil features a green field with a large yellow diamond in the center. Inside the diamond, there is a blue circle with 27 white, five-pointed stars arranged in the pattern of the night sky over Rio de Janeiro as it appeared on November 15, 1889, representing the country's capital at the time of the proclamation of the republic. The green represents the House of Braganza (the Brazilian imperial family) and is associated with hope. The yellow and blue colors represent the Habsburg dynasty and the city of Braganza.

This flag always catches my attention. I really like its awesome color combination and shape composition. I also think it stands out in the crowd. Thank you very much for sharing the interesting meanings of each color and element in the flag. I never would have suspected that the green and yellow represent the Brazilian Imperial House. Finally, I loved your definition of this flag: "Definitely the best symbol of a nation, with striking and really meaningful colors, reminiscent of the past but minding the future." I also happen to love the British Union Jack, Barbados, and Albania. Thanks again.

7 Mexico The national flag of Mexico consists of three vertical stripes of equal width. The left stripe is green, the middle one is white, and the right one is red. In the center of the white stripe, there is the Mexican coat of arms. The green stripe represents hope and independence, the white stripe symbolizes purity and unity, and the red stripe stands for the blood of the national heroes. The coat of arms features an eagle perched on a cactus, holding a serpent in its beak and standing on a rock.

The Mexican flag not only incorporates beautiful aesthetics but is also entirely grounded in the histories of three peoples: the Natives, the Spaniards, and the Mexican mestizos.

Though the meanings of the colors are often debated, the color green symbolizes the green gemstone jade, which the natives believed to be a symbol for the "present" and all it entails. The white symbolizes religion, brought by the Spaniards and adopted ever since. The red symbolizes the blood of Mexican heroes shed in defense of the nation. The eagle, snake, and cactus represent the Mexica legend of how Tenochtitlan (future Mexico City) was founded.

Few other flags contain as much potent symbolism, and many that do fail to grasp their nation's history in a truly beautiful manner.

8 Philippines The national flag of the Philippines consists of a horizontal rectangular design with a royal blue field on the top and a scarlet red field on the bottom. In the middle of the flag, there is a white equilateral triangle pointing upwards, with a golden-yellow sun with eight rays at the center of the triangle. Each ray represents one of the eight provinces that first revolted against Spanish colonial rule. The royal blue field represents peace, truth, and justice, while the scarlet red field symbolizes patriotism and valor. The golden-yellow sun represents unity, freedom, and democracy.

The flag of the Republic of the Philippines is called the Three Stars and a Sun. General Emilio Aguinaldo, the leader of the revolt against Spain, designed the Philippine flag. The equilateral triangle at the hoist signifies equality. Its white color symbolizes purity. The yellow sun represents the significant steps taken by Filipinos in nation-building. The sun's eight rays represent the first eight Filipino provinces to rebel against Spain. The three yellow stars represent the main geographical regions: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The blue stripe stands for peace, truth, and justice. The red stripe symbolizes patriotism and valor. If the Philippines is at war, the national flag is flown upside down with the red band at the top.

9 Japan The national flag of Japan, commonly known as the "Rising Sun" flag, features a white rectangular field with a red circular disc, known as the Hinomaru, in the center. The red disc represents the sun and is associated with Japan's nickname, the "Land of the Rising Sun." The flag has been used by Japan for centuries and carries cultural and historical significance.

Why is Japan not in the top 5? It breaks none of the rules of being a good flag. Only using 2-4 colors from the colors white, red, black, green, yellow, and blue? Check. Can a child draw it from memory? Check. No words? Check. For example, a normal child cannot draw Albania's eagle. Also, can a child draw the sun on the Philippines flag? The same goes for the US and Canada. How can a child draw 50 stars in a small space? And the maple leaf may be hard. Additionally, the Brazilian flag has words in its native language. I didn't mean to offend anyone. At least the Philippines flag has a cool mechanic that requires flipping the flag if the country is at war.

10 Albania The national flag of Albania consists of a red field with a black double-headed eagle in the center. The eagle holds a red banner with a black trim and the motto "Ti Shqipëri, më jep nder, më jep emrin Shqipëtar" (You Albania, give me honor, give me the name Albanian) written in black. The red field symbolizes bravery, strength, and valor, while the black double-headed eagle represents the national emblem of Albania and is associated with freedom and independence.

The flag is the best because it represents the history of a nation. It was first raised by Scanderbeg in 1444 after his return to Albania to halt the Ottoman invasion and unify all Albanian leaders. Since then, the red flag with the black double-headed eagle has symbolized unity among Albanians. This is the flag for which hundreds of thousands of Albanians have given their lives.

What adds to the majesty of this flag is that it's not only the flag of Albania, but also the flag of Albanians. This means it is used not only in Albania but also by Albanians in Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Greece, and in Italy by the Albanian Arbreshes in Calabria and Sicily.

It is officially prohibited in Montenegro and has been burned many times in Macedonia and Serbia for the sole reason that it is sacred to Albanians.

The Contenders
11 South Africa The national flag of South Africa consists of two horizontal bands of equal width: a top band of red and a bottom band of blue. Separating the two bands, there is a central green Y-shaped stripe that merges into a single narrow horizontal band of gold on the hoist side. The Y-shape symbolizes the convergence of diverse elements of South African society, representing unity. The red, white, and blue colors are taken from the flags of the ruling party at the time of the flag's adoption and represent historical factors and the colors associated with freedom. The green color represents the fertility of the land, and the gold stripe symbolizes the mineral wealth of the country.

Looking at this flag always fills me with great pride, emotion, and shivers. We are not at peace, we are not at war, but we are all from this one and only rainbow nation.

The colors of the flag represent the turbulent history of South Africa.

The black, gold, and green are the Pan-African colors representing Ethiopia, the only African country not to be colonized by Europeans (except for a period by Italy during WWII). The red, white, and blue represent the colors of the flags of the Netherlands and the United Kingdom (Union Jack), as both were colonizers of South Africa.

As for the history, the Dutch colonized the Cape, Britain took over, fought the Boers (Dutch descendants), and created the Dominion/Union of South Africa. This was followed by Apartheid, a move toward equality, and the present day.

12 Wales The national flag of Wales, also known as Y Ddraig Goch (The Red Dragon), features a field of white with a red dragon passant (standing with one foot raised) in the center. The red dragon has been associated with Wales for centuries and is considered a national symbol. The flag represents the Welsh heritage, culture, and pride.

The Welsh flag is the coolest, most bad-ass flag in the world. Come on! It has a big red dragon. Not to mention the history and story behind it. It is mystical, magical, and amazing. I imagine that children all around the world see the flag in an atlas and think, "Wow, where is that place?"

Easily one of the most original flags in the world (most just have stripes and stars), we have a dragon! The symbolism of strength, power, and our historical struggle to be a country and not just part of England is significant. The colors also symbolize the natural beauty of Wales.

13 Germany The national flag of Germany, commonly referred to as the Bundesflagge or Schwarz-Rot-Gold (Black-Red-Gold), consists of three horizontal stripes of equal width: black at the top, red in the middle, and gold at the bottom. The colors have historical and political significance. The black stripe represents determination, the red stripe symbolizes bravery and valor, and the gold stripe represents generosity and unity. The flag was first adopted in 1919 and has been a symbol of democratic values and the unification of Germany.

Fun fact: The modern German flag is similar to the flag of the German Confederation and still has the same meaning. Black represents Prussia, red represents the Hanse, and gold represents the Holy Roman Empire. Combined, these three colors signify a democratic German state in which everyone could live in peace.

Fun Fact 2: The flag of the German Empire was essentially the flag of the North German Confederation. The colors had specific meanings: Black represented Prussia, white represented unity between all states, and red represented the Hanse.

14 Bhutan The national flag of Bhutan features a rectangle divided diagonally into two triangles. The upper triangle is yellow, representing the civil traditions and secular authority of the country, while the lower triangle is orange, symbolizing the religious traditions and spiritual authority. In the hoist-side corner of the upper triangle, there is a white dragon known as the Druk, which holds a jewel in its claws and represents the sovereign power of the Bhutanese people. The flag represents the harmony between the religious and secular aspects of Bhutanese society.

It is the one nation that can represent folklore while still maintaining beauty and near-simplicity. It is similar to Wales as well, both of which are really cool flags. I hope you vote for them.

It is a sovereign nation with a dragon holding power orbs. Bhutan's name in its native language is "Land of the Thunder Dragon." How cool is that?

This flag is awesome. A giant, fire-breathing dragon - I mean, come on!

15 Papua New Guinea The national flag of Papua New Guinea features a rectangular design divided diagonally from the top hoist corner to the bottom fly corner. The upper diagonal band is black, representing the indigenous people, and the lower diagonal band is red, symbolizing the bloodshed for freedom. In the canton area (top left corner), there is a white silhouette of a bird of paradise, which is a national symbol of Papua New Guinea and represents cultural uniqueness and national identity. The flag was adopted upon the country's independence in 1971.
16 Nepal The national flag of Nepal is unique and non-rectangular in shape. It consists of two triangular pennants stacked one above the other. The top pennant is crimson red with a blue border, and the bottom pennant is a dark blue field with a white emblem in the shape of a crescent moon and a twelve-pointed sun. The crimson red color represents bravery, while the blue border symbolizes peace. The sun and moon emblem represents the hope that Nepal will endure as long as these celestial bodies exist.

Great flag with great meaning and shape.

The blue border symbolizes the peace and harmony that have been prevalent in the country since the age of Gautama Buddha, who was born in Nepal. The crimson red is Nepal's national color, and it indicates the brave spirits of the Nepalese people. The two triangles symbolize the Himalaya Mountains and represent the two major religions, Hinduism and Buddhism.

The red triangular flag has been a Hindu symbol of victory since the time of the Ramayana and Mahabharata. The depiction of celestial bodies represents permanence, the hope that Nepal will last as long as the sun and the moon. The moon symbolizes that the Nepalese are soothing and calm, while the sun symbolizes fierce resolve. The moon also represents the cool weather and shades of the Himalayas, whereas the sun symbolizes the heat and high temperature at the lower part (Tarai) of Nepal.

Another interpretation: The flag's shape symbolizes a Nepalese pagoda. Putting a mirror at the side of the flag closest to the flagpole will generate an image of a pagoda.

17 Kiribati The national flag of Kiribati features a red field with a gold frigatebird flying over a gold rising sun. The rising sun represents a new day and a bright future for the nation. The frigatebird, known as the "Te Ririti," is a national symbol and signifies freedom, skill, and Kiribati's relationship with the surrounding ocean. The red color symbolizes courage and strength. The flag of Kiribati reflects the country's geographical location and cultural significance.

Unfortunately, this country may be underwater in the future due to climate change and global warming. However, they were the first nation to enter the new millennium, which actually started in 2001.

If this list were purely based on aesthetics, there's no way it would be outside the top 5.

I've never seen this one before. Now I'm having second thoughts.

18 South Korea The national flag of South Korea, known as the Taegeukgi, features a white field with a red and blue Taegeuk symbol in the center. The Taegeuk represents the concept of yin and yang, symbolizing balance and harmony. The red section represents yang, while the blue section represents yin. Surrounding the Taegeuk, there are four black trigrams known as "Gwa," which represent the fundamental elements of the universe: heaven, earth, fire, and water. The flag conveys the ideals of balance, harmony, and the pursuit of peace.

White is a traditional color of the Korean people. The emblem in the center of the South Korean flag represents the dual forces of yin (blue) and yang (red). The yin and yang balance each other and maintain a harmonious existence by being complementary opposites: positive and negative, active and passive, male and female, night and day, good and evil, and so on. Yin is the passive or static mode, and yang is the active or dynamic mode. The trigrams represent the elements of fire, water, earth, wood, and metal.

19 Portugal The national flag of Portugal consists of a rectangular field divided vertically into two bands: a green band on the hoist side and a larger, wider red band on the fly side. In the center of the red band, there is the Portuguese coat of arms, which features a shield with seven castles, representing the seven Moorish fortresses conquered by Portugal. Above the shield, there is a white five-pointed star representing victory. The green color symbolizes hope, while the red color represents courage and the Portuguese people's dedication to their nation.

Green represents our hope, which led the country to discover South America and be the first to navigate across Africa with the purpose of reaching India. Red represents the blood of those who died for the country, like when we helped Europe by expelling Muslims from Spain. It's a great combination of colors with a beautiful symbol. Simply the best. The ones on top are only there because there are more people from their countries.

The Portuguese flag is very underrated in Europe because of the historical background embedded in the coat of arms. Many European flags have had their coat of arms removed or simplified, but Portugal is one of the few countries that refuses to strip the coat of arms from their flag. The only downside this beautiful flag has is that it doesn't look quite good when it's rotated.

20 Spain The national flag of Spain, known as the "Rojigualda," features a horizontal triband design of red-yellow-red with the national coat of arms off-centered toward the hoist side. The yellow stripe in the middle is double the width of each red stripe. The red and yellow colors have historical significance in Spain and have been used in various regional flags for centuries. The coat of arms consists of several elements, including the Pillars of Hercules, the crown, the royal shield, and the yoke and arrows symbolizing Catholic Monarchs Isabella and Ferdinand.

It's cool-looking, but I think the flag of Spain from right after the Spanish Revolution is way cooler.

I really like it. It's bright, colorful, and strong! The coat of arms also looks very good on the red and yellow background. It gives off a royal vibe.

Now, THAT is one country to vote for.

21 Greece The national flag of Greece consists of nine horizontal stripes of equal width, alternating between blue and white. The top left corner features a blue square with a white cross extending to the edges of the flag. The nine stripes represent the nine syllables of the phrase "Ελευθερία ή Θάνατος" (Freedom or Death), which is a motto associated with the Greek War of Independence. The blue color symbolizes the sky and the sea, while the white color represents purity and the desire for freedom.

The blue in the Greek flag represents the sea and the sky. The white represents purity and freedom, as well as the cleansing of the soul. The cross symbolizes religion. The flag has nine lines to represent the phrase "Freedom or Death," coined during independence from the Ottomans. It also represents the nine muses of Greek mythology.

I'm not a Greek national, but I believe the Greek flag should be number one. It has very friendly colors, only uses two colors, and features a very complex yet simple design. It has a canton in the upper left corner for hanging, looks great in icons or pictograms, and is easy to recognize. It stands out and is very unique. The stripes make the flag easier to sew, and once sewn, it becomes even more beautiful. When you go shopping for souvenirs, buy a Greek flag too!

22 Pakistan The national flag of Pakistan features a dark green field with a vertical white stripe on the hoist side. In the center of the green field, there is a white crescent moon and a five-pointed star. The green color represents Islam and the majority Muslim population of the country. The crescent moon and star are traditional symbols of Islam and represent progress and light. The white stripe represents religious minorities and minorities' rights in Pakistan.

The Pakistani flag has a wisdom behind its colors and design. The green color shows the Muslim majority and prosperity, while the white color shows the prosperity of minorities. The crescent represents progress, and the five-pointed star represents light and knowledge. The Pakistani flag has deep meaning and looks so cool.

The importance of the flag of Pakistan is not just confined to being a so-called "flag." It is a source of unity, peace, brotherhood, and fraternity. The green color shows the power of Muslims, the white part shows that non-Muslims are also given due protection and rights, while the crescent and star show the patriotism, love, and honesty of the people toward Pakistan. Pakistan's flag is deeper than it looks! No country in the world can compare its flag to the flag of Pakistan. Pakistan Zindabad!

23 Norway The national flag of Norway, commonly referred to as the Norgesflagg or the "Flag of Norway," features a red field with an off-centered white-bordered blue Scandinavian cross that extends to the edges of the flag. The vertical part of the cross is closer to the hoist side. The red color represents courage, while the white cross represents Norway's strong Christian heritage. The design of the flag dates back to the 19th century and reflects the country's historical ties to the other Scandinavian nations.

Norwegians have the most beautiful nature, midnight sun, and northern lights, but they also have a gorgeous flag. It's like some sort of Union Jack in a way, with a Danish and a Finnish flag combined. It's even more beautiful when it's completely sewn.

I honestly love all the Scandinavian flags, but I think Norway has a really nice color combination with the navy, white, and red. Yes, these colors are used in many other countries, but for some reason, Norway stands out to me.

Such a neat design. Excellent composition. Good color contrast. Bold appearance. It's the best and looks cool on outdoor gear. My number one.

24 Argentina The national flag of Argentina, known as the "Celeste y Blanca," consists of three horizontal bands of equal width: light blue on the top and bottom, and white in the middle. In the center of the white band, there is a golden sun with a face, known as the Sun of May. The light blue color represents the sky, the white color symbolizes peace and honesty, and the Sun of May represents the Inca sun god Inti and represents the May Revolution of 1810, which led to Argentina's independence. The flag was adopted in 1818.

I like the contrast between the sky blue, white, and the yellow of the sun. For me, this is the most beautiful and jazzy, followed by the Spanish and Brazilian flags.

Argentina's flag is light blue and white, often seen with a sun in the middle. Tradition says that Manuel Belgrano, the flag's creator, was inspired by the cloudy sky.

I don't know why this is so low on the list. The sky blue makes it look very friendly and pleasing to the eyes, and the beautiful Sun of May is the finishing touch. I love this flag.

25 Antigua and Barbuda The national flag of Antigua and Barbuda features a red field with an inverted isosceles triangle on the fly side. Inside the triangle, there are three horizontal bands of black, light blue, and white, from top to bottom. The red color represents the energy and resilience of the people, the black symbolizes the African heritage, the light blue represents hope and the Caribbean Sea, and the white color symbolizes purity and the nation's aspirations for the future. The flag was adopted upon Antigua and Barbuda's independence in 1981.

Pretty good flag. I think it's nice-looking, but there could be so much more to it than just a sun and water.

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