Australia’s best travel secret is out.
Our favourite overseas playground, Bali, has been named the most popular destination in the world in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards for 2021.
The awards are based on the quality and quantity of reviews and ratings for accommodation, restaurants, and things to do in destinations all over the world over a 12-month period.
With COVID-19 having disrupted travel in 2020 like never seen before, this year’s rankings captured where travellers when they could travel in 2020, as well as their dream destinations for the future.
While the island of Bali is well known to the world, it hasn’t seemed quite as popular to people overseas as it has always been to Australians — until now.
Announcing Bali as the most popular destination in the world, Tripadvisor described it as “a living postcard, an Indonesian paradise that feels like a fantasy”.
“Soak up the sun on a stretch of fine white sand, or commune with the tropical creatures as you dive along coral ridges or the colourful wreck of a WWII war ship. On shore, the lush jungle shelters stone temples and mischievous monkeys,” Tripadvisor said.
“The ‘artistic capital’ of Ubud is the perfect place to see a cultural dance performance, take a batik or silver-smithing workshop, or invigorate your mind and body in a yoga class.”
Bali came fourth on last year’s list of most popular destinations.
The destination in second place is also one of Australia’s top international destinations — London.
Tripadvisor said the UK capital was “many worlds in one”, noting its diversity of neighbourhoods, historic sights and top restaurants and pubs.
The Emirarti city of Dubai was in third place on the list, followed by a run of cosmopolitan capital cities — Rome, Paris and Hanoi.
Crete, Bangkok, Barcelona and Istanbul rounded out the top 10.
No Australian destination was named among the top 25 most popular destinations. However, in a separate ranking as part of the Travellers’ Choice Awards, the NSW holiday hot spots of Shoalhaven and Mudgee were named among the top 10 best emerging destinations, and Freycinet National Park is Tasmania came 18th on the list of best national parks.
While the pandemic literally stopped millions of people from travelling in 2020, once travel begins to resume, it may also change our habits or priorities in choosing places to visit, Tripadvisor’s vice president for global media business, Christine Maguire, said.
“Alongside the latest vaccine developments, pent-up demand is prompting the world to think more about travel in 2021,” she said.
“But one result of the pandemic may be the destinations they’re interested in. In fact, a recent survey revealed that 74 per cent of travellers will spend more time selecting a destination when planning their next trip.”
MOST POPULAR DESTINATIONS FOR 2021
1. Bali, Indonesia
2. London, United Kingdom
3. Dubai, United Arab Emirates
4. Rome, Italy
5. Paris, France
6. Hanoi, Vietnam
7. Crete, Greece
8. Bangkok, Thailand
9. Barcelona, Spain
10. Istanbul, Turkey
11. Hoi An, Vietnam
12. Siem Reap, Cambodia
13. Marrakech, Morocco
14. Phuket, Thailand
15. New Delhi, India
16. Cancun, Mexico
17. Playa del Carmen, Mexico
18. Florence, Italy
19. Dominican Republic
20. Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain
21. Lisbon, Portugal
22. New York City, United States
23. Edinburgh, United Kingdom
24. Jaipur, India
25. Cusco, Peru