AreaVibes reveals the best places to live in Iowa for 2016 using our Livability Score. The Livability Score for each city in Iowa is calculated out of 100 from a unique algorithm based on various metrics, including: amenities, cost of living, crime, education, employment, housing and weather. Iowa has a population of 3,078,116 and a population density of 54.6 people per square mile. The capital city is Des Moines and the largest city in Iowa is Des Moines. To filter the results, use the dropdown options to sort by population or category.