Tripadvisor the world’s largest travel site, announced the winners of its Travellers’ Choice awards for Destinations on the Rise. The awards highlight 52 spots around the world that have seen the greatest increase in positive feedback and interest from the TripAdvisor community, year-over-year.
This year two Indian destinations have made it to the coveted list, Leh (Rank # 7) and Rishikesh (Rank #10) as opposed to just one last year. In addition to Asia and world, Travellers’ Choice Destinations on the Rise lists were also unveiled for the U.S, Europe, South America, and the South Pacific.
Award-winners were determined using an algorithm that primarily measured the year-over-year increase in positive TripAdvisor traveller review ratings on accommodations, restaurants, and attractions, across destinations worldwide.
“The TripAdvisor community has helped surface some unheralded destinations across the globe that are receiving rave reviews from travellers worldwide,” said Barbara Messing, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor. “From the boardwalks of the Jersey Shore to the temples of Vietnam, these award-winners offer highly-rated options for accommodations, restaurants and activities to inspire those planning their vacations for the new year.”
Travellers’ Choice Destinations on the Rise – ASIA
1. Da Nang, Vietnam – 122 Hotels, 203 Restaurants, 74 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate1: $51.04)
Located between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, this destination is known for its tranquil beaches, culinary tours, and Buddhist sanctuaries. TripAdvisor reviewers suggest a visit to the historic Marble Mountains where the “panoramic scenery is breathtaking.” For an authentic Vietnamese meal, travellers should not miss Lam Vien Restaurant.
2. Sihanoukville, Cambodia – 53 Hotels, 197 Restaurants, 61 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $99.35)
Surrounded by the Bay of Thailand, Sihanoukville is a spectacular beach town that offers premier snorkelling and diving. TripAdvisor reviewers describe Ream National Park as “a true tropical forest.” After exploring, travellers should check out Martini Beach, a great place to eat and marvel at the sunset.
3. Ao Nang, Thailand – 87 Hotels, 157 Restaurants, 78 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $68.40)
Beloved by travellers for its world class beaches and water sports, Ao Nang in Krabi is quickly growing in popularity. One TripAdvisor reviewer described Phra Nang Beach as “beautiful, clean and pristine.” In between swimming and sun bathing, travellers are invited to dine on incredible Thai food at Tom Ma Yom, which offers succulent prawns, papaya salad, and more.
4. Naha, Japan – 102 Hotels, 1,059 Restaurants, 82 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $84.38)
Located on the southern coast of Okinawa Island, Naha is known for its historic monuments and majestic gardens. One traveller noted that Shurijo Castle has been rebuilt to give visitors a “real feel” for ancient castles. TripAdvisor reviewers also rave about the traditional Okinawan cuisine at Yunangi noting, “It’s well worth the wait.”
5. Malé, Maldives – 38 Hotels, 89 Restaurants, 24 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $275.20)
As the island capital of Maldives, Male has its own distinctive character where travellers can have a taste of true Maldivian culture before heading out to the archipelago of islands. TripAdvisor reviewers describe the Old Friday Mosque as containing “one of the most important woodcarvings and laquerwork in the country”. Hungry travellers can drop by Sala Thai Restaurant for “one of the best restaurants in Male.”
6. Baku, Azerbaijan – 92 Hotels, 51 Restaurants, 213 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $162.64)
From its time as a Persian capital to its Soviet occupation, Baku, the capital city of Azerbaijan, is steeped in heritage. Visit Old City Baku to explore its “maze of little cobble-stoned streets, caravansaries, palaces, churches and mosques”, as well as the Maiden’s Tower, a UNESCO World Heritage Site which is also “one of the most noted landmarks and Azerbaijan’s most distinctive national symbol.”
7. Leh, India – 51 Hotels, 53 Restaurants, 52 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $85.21)
Surrounded by mountains, Leh is a picturesque city that used to be the capital of the Himalayan kingdom of Ladakh. With monasteries such as Thiksey Monastery in close proximity for travellers looking for a spiritual retreat and “peace and positivity”, the landscape of Leh also provides of numerous adventure activities.
8. Kandy, Sri Lanka – 50 Hotels, 73 Restaurants, 75 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: 107.27)
Kandy was the last capital of the ancient kings of Sri Lanka before becoming a British colony in 1815. The city still retains much of the Sinhalese tradition, and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1988. Travellers looking for a place to rest can visit Slightly Chilled Lounge Bar for the “excellent view of Kandy lake and the surrounding city.”
9. Yerevan, Armenia – 50 Hotels, 279 Restaurants, 73 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $125.97)
Yerevan has been the capital of Armenia since 1918. The city is immensely rich in history, having been under Arab, Ottoman, Persian and Soviet rule in the past. TripAdvisor reviewers recommend a visit to The Museum of Ancient Manuscripts for “excellent display of many Armenian documents going back over a thousand years.” For a taste of Armenian cuisine with a French twist, travellers should not miss The Club Yerevan.
10. Rishikesh, India – 40 Hotels, 68 Restaurants, 66 Attractions (Average nightly hotel rate: $59.62)
Rishikesh, located at the base of the Himalayas, is also famously known as the World Capital of Yoga, drawing visitors from all around the world including The Beatles in the 1960s. The Beatles Ashram is the exact site that the Beatles visited almost 50 years ago which TripAdvisor reviewers describe as having “a great and powerful energy”. For an eatery with a similar relaxing ambience, travellers can visit Bistro Nirvana for a meal.
Travelers’ Choice Destinations on the Rise – World 1. Da Nang, Vietnam – 122 Hotels, 203 Restaurants, 74 Attractions 2. Sihanoukville, Cambodia – 53 Hotels, 197 Restaurants, 61 Attractions 3. Limassol, Cyprus – 60 Hotels, 337 Restaurants, 83 Attractions 4. Ao Nang, Thailand – 87 Hotels, 157 Restaurants, 78 Attractions 5. Bodrum City, Turkey – 115 Hotels, 385 Restaurants, 101 Attractions 6. Naha, Japan – 102 Hotels, 1,059 Restaurants, 82 Attractions 7. Hurghada, Egypt – 182 Hotels, 229 Restaurants, 162 Attractions 8. Kazan, Russia – 44 Hotels, 1,081 Restaurants, 217 Attractions 9. Manaus, Brazil – 40 Hotels, 935 Restaurants, 141 Attractions 10. Eilat, Israel – 65 Hotels, 88 Restaurants, 65 Attractions.