Vietnam’s Da Nang has staked an early claim to be one of the hot destinations for 2015 as TripAdvisor announces the winners of its Travellers’ Choice awards for Destinations on the Rise.
The annual awards recognise the destinations that have seen the greatest increase in positive feedback and interest from the TripAdvisor community year-on-year.
Da Nang, where an overnight stay in a hotel will cost you an average of £32 and a flight with one-stop comes out at as little as £542, is revealed as the number one Destination on the Rise in the world this year. In second place is Sihanoukville, Cambodia while Limassol in Cyprus takes third position.
A TripAdvisor traveller in the Da Nang forums gave their explanation for why the city has grown in popularity, “If you like to be among the locals, watching daily life without any souvenir shops and tourist hassle, it's a good place. The main attraction in my eyes is the river front with the new bridges, illuminated at night. On weekends don't miss the dragon bridge, the most interesting place in Da Nang.”
“The results of this year’s awards show that South East Asia is clearly piquing traveller interest. While this part of the world has been firmly pinned on the travel trail for some time, it’s the region’s lesser known destinations that are now rising up to rival the more established tourist hotspots,” commented James Kay, TripAdvisor spokesperson.
Travellers’ Choice Destinations on the Rise – World:
1. Da Nang, Vietnam (Average nightly hotel rate2: £32)
Located between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, this destination is known for its tranquil beaches, culinary tours, and Buddhist sanctuaries. Da Nang is also home to the second best rated hotel in Vietnam, Fusion Maia Resort, according to this year’s Travellers’ Choice Awards for Hotels. 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 (Average nightly hotel rate: £62)
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. Limassol, Cyprus (Average nightly hotel rate: £92)
Offering sun, sand, and culture, this Mediterranean spot has something for visitors of all ages. History buffs can learn about the archaic sites at Kourion including its magnificent amphitheatre and intricate mosaics. For delicious Greek fare, TripAdvisor reviewers recommend Meze Taverna Restaurant, where the food is “homemade with love.”
4. Ao Nang, Thailand (Average nightly hotel rate: £43)
Beloved by travellers for its world class beaches and water sports, Ao Nang 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.
5. Bodrum City, Turkey (Average nightly hotel rate: £81)
Once a quiet community, Bodrum City is now one of Turkey’s most popular holiday destinations. TripAdvisor travellers write about the culturally rich attractions such as Castle of St. Peter and the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology, which displays some spectacular ancient artifacts. For a great meal, travellers can enjoy mouthwatering kebabs and mezze at Gambilya Natural Cuisine.
6. Naha, Japan (Average nightly hotel rate: £53)
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.”
7. Hurghada, Egypt (Average nightly hotel rate: £63)
Travellers will enjoy fun in the sun at this resort town located along the Red Sea. During the day, sunbathers, snorkelers and divers can make a splash at Sharm El Naga, where one TripAdvisor reviewer describes the beach as “a gentle slope into the clear blue sea.” At night, diners can devour “the best steak in town” at Moby Dickrestaurant.
8. Kazan, Russia (Average nightly hotel rate: £68)
Along the Volga River, travellers are invited to experience the culture in this city known for its rich history. Not to be missed is the Kazan Kremlin, a citadel that one TripAdvisor traveller describes as offering “a mix of Orthodox Christian and Muslim cultures.” For authentic regional cuisine, travellers can dine at Pashmir Restaurant, which boasts “an amazing riverside location.”
9. Manaus, Brazil (Average nightly hotel rate: £58)
A recent World Cup host city, this spot offers cosmopolitan attractions in the middle of the Brazilian Amazon. A TripAdvisor reviewer recommends touring the Teatro Amazons to “get a real sense of the grandeur of the old opera.” Hungry travellers should consider dining at Banzeiro, where one reviewer describes the signature Tambagui ribs as “nothing less than an incredible.”
10. Eilat, Israel (Average nightly hotel rate: £183)
On the Gulf of Aqaba, Israel’s southernmost city boasts sunshine nearly every day of the year. Visitors can explore Timna National Park, which one TripAdvisor reviewer describes as “a rocky desert, with magnificent views of red and pink rocks.” Later on, guests can cool off while snorkelling in the “clear turquoise water” at theCoral Beach Nature Reserve.
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.
For the complete list of Destinations on the Rise award winners, as well as reviews and candid traveller photos, go to: www.tripadvisor.co.uk/TravellersChoice-DestinationsontheRise.
Notes to editors:
1 Flight price shown reflects the cost per person of a one-stop flight from all London airports to Da Nang, Vietnam. The price is sourced from TripAdvisor and represents a flight on 1st February returning on 15th February 2015 (the best time of year to go according to many travel sources).
2Hotel prices shown reflect the average nightly rate of hotels found on TripAdvisor within each award-winning destination. Pricing information was sourced from TripAdvisor booking data and represents prices offered from January 1, 2014-December 31, 2014.