Also I can't stand City-States they feel like filler that just gets in the way half the time. I might try to turn them off in the next game and see how it goes.
Yeah, you definitely have that option and I wouldn't blame you for using it. Getting rid of all city states will kind of remove the world congress gameplay and the Diplomatic Victory as well, but I don't think the game will be harmed too much by that loss.
I think the most annoying part of the City State system for me is managing the quests. It's kind of tedious to try and keep track of them and it's not that uncommon for them to be too out of the way to be practical, which makes it feel like you don't have much control over which City States you ally with. In general, I just ignore the quests and take points for the ones I just happen to do incidentally, and then if needed I bribe city states with gold later on. I've been trying to pay a little more attention to them lately just to optimize my gameplay as I try the highest difficulties. I also don't really like how much of the map real estate ends up being taken up by city-states. I would say that Civ VI improves the system on the whole but I'm still not sure I like it in that game.
I do generally think it's lucky to have a continent to yourself since you can ignore military and put up all the buildings you like, but it's less true on lower difficulties since those make it easier to eat up the AI civs and snowball as a result. You might have completed your domination victory even more easily if some of them had been closer.
I'm playing every game from GotD 2020! Games Completed: 10/129 Currently Playing: Sid Meier's Civilization V