Wednesday, August 3, 2011

World Top Tourist Destinations, Top 50 Tourist Places in the world, Top 50 Tourist Places in the world , Top 50 Destinations in the world, Top Tourist Attractions in the World, Top Tourist Destinations in the World

Top 50 Tourist Places in the world, 

#50. Boston, Massachusetts

Take a walk through Harvard Yard, cruise down Boston Harbor, and take in the old-world appeal of New England’s most historic cities. Boston just barely made the list in 2010, and we think that’s wicked cool.

#49. Maui, Hawaii

Experience traditional Hawaiian luaus, take the road to Hana, visit the Haleakala or Molikini craters, and make the most of one of Hawaii’s top getaways.

#48. Brussels, Belgium

See the medieval Grand Place, visit the EU Commission and European Parliament (more interesting than it sounds!), taste gourmet chocolate and mouth watering beer. Brussels is all about European history and culture on a manageable scale.

#47. Bangkok, Thailand

Thailand had a rough year, with political and social instability that kept some travelers away. Fortunately the attractions of Thailand kept many travelers coming, if in slightly smaller numbers than in 2009. Here’s to hoping 2011 is a better year for Thailand’s slightly beleaguered tourism industry.

#46. Miami, Florida

Miami has culture (think: Little Havana), outdoor beauty (thing: Biscayne Bay) and, of course, nightlife (think: clubs and bars that cater to a beach-loving crowd). What’s not to love about Miami??

#45. Nice, France

The French Riviera is all about relaxing in the sun and sea. Nice is one of the area’s crown jewels – enjoy the panoramic views of Mt. Boron and take in the breathtaking vistas of Nice. It’s also a good spot for day trips up and down the coast.

#44. Cancun, Mexico

Relax in beach paradise and soak up the natural beauty of Xcaret, Tulum and Xel-Ha. For more adventure there’s always the nearby ruins of Chichen Itza, the ancient capital of the Mayan Empire. Got kids? Then plan on a dolphin swim or snorkel in the warm waters of the Caribbean.

#43. Franz Josef & Fox Glacier, New Zealand

Explore the ice caves, pinnacles and seracs of New Zealand’s South Island. As you make your way through Franz Josef & Fox Glacier your options for getting up-close and personal with a glacier include by foot or by helicopter!

#42. Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland is not a destination in and of itself (despite what locals will tell you!). Instead, Auckland is all about doing things in and around the city. Sail along the Auckland Harbour, admire Mt Eden, tour the Waitomo Caves, or spot whales and dolphins in the waters surrounding Auckland.

#41. Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik itself is not the destination, it’s Iceland itself (at least the bits you can easily cover on a day trip from Reykjavik). Relax at the Blue Lagoon, take a night trip to view the famous Northern Lights, snorkel (yes – snorkel!) in magnificent glacial waters, or sit back and watch Minke whales and puffins passing by.

#40. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Dubai has made a name for itself as both a shopping paradise and as a place where the sky knows no limits (it’s home to one of the world’s tallest buildings). Dubai is also a popular transit hub en route to Asia and the Australia from Europe. So whether you have a few hours or a few days, there’s plenty to keep you busy in Dubai. Even an indoor ski slope!

#39. Brisbane, Australia

Brisbane doesn’t receive a lot of international press, which is a shame. Within Australia it’s a hugely popular holiday destination, and it’s slowly getting on the radar of Brits and Americans looking for more than a “Sydney – Melbourne – Uluru” experience Down Under.

#38. Costa del Sol, Spain

The appeal of Spain’s Costa del Sol are obvious: beaches, great seafood, nightlife, and quaint medieval towns dotting the coastal mountains. Drive along the Costa del Sol to the port of Gibraltar, visit the Saint Michael caves, explore Málaga and Benalmádena, and just enjoy the spectacle

#37. Montreal, Canada

Cities like Montreal don’t happen very often. By day, Montreal bubbles with Eurocharm and North American pizzazz. After dark, its nightlife sizzles with creativity and abandon. It’s the city of 100 nations, all lured by Montreal’s intoxicating mix of Gallic tradition and joie de vivre.

#36. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur has grown from nothing to a bustling city of more than two million people. It’s a modern city of gleaming skyscrapers, but it retains much of the local color that other Asian boom-cities have lost. Kuala Lumpur has plenty of colonial buildings in its center, a vibrant Chinatown with street vendors and night markets, and a bustling Little India.

#35. Perth, Australia

Perth claims to be the sunniest state capital in Australia, though more striking is its isolation from the rest of the country – Perth is over 2,750 miles (4,400km) from Sydney by road. The recent resources boom has seen Perth blossom into a sophisticated, cosmopolitan city with bars, restaurants, cultural activities and myriad things to do. Ride up the Swan River, tour Western Australia’s wine country, and relax and swim along the local beaches.

#34. Christchurch, New Zealand
Christchurch is often described as the most English of New Zealand’s cities. But for all its self-consciously inherited charm, it can hold its own as a thoroughly modern New Zealand city. Kiwi art has pride of place in the city’s gallery, the wildlife reserves teem with native animals, and the multitude of great cafes, restaurants and bars that fill the city center prove that Christchurch has a special charm. The highlights? A whale-watching trip to Kaikoura, Mount Cook, and the Willowbank Wildlife Reserve.

#33. Salzburg, Austria
Salzburg’s Altstadt (old town), on the south bank of the river, is a Baroque fiesta of churches, plazas, courtyards and fountains, oozing the waves of charm that you would expect from this Mozart mecca. Museums, houses, squares, chocolate bars and liqueurs are all part of one giant homage to Wolfgang. From Salzburg travelers can explore the Bavarian Moutains and Salt-Mines, the hunting castle Hellbrunn, Hitler’s infamous Eagle’s Nest, and Mozart’s birthplace.

#32. Ayers Rock, Australia
Nothing in Australia is as readily identifiable as Uluru (Ayers Rock). If you travel to Ayers Rock during the afternoon, it appears as an ocher-brown color, scored and pitted by dark shadows. As the sun sets, it illuminates the rock in burnished orange, then a series of deeper and darker reds before it fades into charcoal. Don’t assume, however, that a distant glimpse of this geological marvel will suffice – a close-up, extended viewing of the rock’s contours is a must.

#31.Cairo, Egypt
Cairo is an all-out assault on the senses. Known as the ‘Mother of the World’, this vibrant, chaotic city is home to more than 16 million. Noisy, polluted and totally unpredictable, the sheer intensity of Cairo can seduce or overwhelm. Cairo’s historic buildings are buried in age-old quarters of the city that have yet to be tamed and made tourist-friendly, so take a tour to get beneath the skin of this man-made wonder. While the Giza Pyramids are right on Cairo’s doorstep, the city is also a great base for excursions to destinations further afield like Memphis, Luxor and Alexandria.

#30. Oahu, Hawaii
When most people think of Hawaii, it’s typically the island of Oahu and its famous landmarks – like Waikiki and Honolulu, Pearl Harbor and Sunset Beach – that spring to mind. Oahu is where the action is, whether you’re looking for nightlife or surf.

#29. Naples, Italy
Naples (Napoli if you live here) is raucous, polluted, anarchic, deafening, crumbling and grubby. It’s also a lot of fun. Superbly positioned on a bay, Naples has a little – and often a lot – of everything. It pulsates with noisy street markets and their colorful characters. Naples is a convenient jumping-off point for nearby Pompeii, and to the stunning Amalfi Coast.

#28. Vancouver, Canada
There aren’t too many cities in the world that offer Vancouver’s combination of big-city lifestyle and outdoor fun in such cheek-by-jowl proximity. Ski in the morning, sail in the afternoon, and still make it back to town in time for a cocktail or three. No wonder it’s one of the cities that routinely tops those lists of the world’s greatest places to live. Highlights for travelers include the Victoria and Butchart Gardens, and Mount Whistler.

#27. Hong Kong
Hong Kong has the big city specials like smog, 14 million elbows and an insane love of clatter. But it’s also efficient, hushed and peaceful: the transport network is excellent, the shopping centers are sublime, and the temples and quiet parks are contemplative oases. Just remember: Hong Kong is about savoring new tastes, weaving through a human gridlock and humming some dumb Cantopop tune while slurping your noodles.

#26. Edinburgh, Scotland
Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh, has a magic that seldom fails to captivate visitors. Modern sophistication melds with staunch tradition from both ends of the social spectrum to create a unique whole, built in noble stone in the most spectacular of settings. It is no exaggeration to describe it as one of the most lovable, and livable, cities on the planet.

#25. Dublin, Ireland
Dublin is the rarest of beasts: a capital that puts an equal premium on the joys and benefits of heritage and hedonism. History and culture rise up from the foundations, but what’ll put a smile on your face is the city’s garrulous sociability and irrepressible humor. Though Dublin’s in a slightly sour mood these days, thanks to its troubled economy, the city does its very best to welcome visitors. Grab a pint at the Guinness Storehouse, explore Dublin Bay and Malahide Castle, drift down the River Liffey and enjoy Dublin’s rich literary history.

#24. Singapore
Singapore has traded in its rough-and-ready opium dens for towers of glass, and its steamy rickshaw image for hi-tech wizardry, but you can still recapture the colonial era with a gin sling under the languorous ceiling fans at Raffles Hotel. At first glance Singapore appears shockingly modern, but this is an undeniably Asian city with Chinese, Malay and Indian traditions. It’s these contrasts that bring the city to life.
#23. Washington DC, USA
Washington DC means white marble, verdant lawns, and the colorful, ritualistic pageantry of American politics: the Capitol dome; limousine processions on Inauguration Day; the mournful, somber, stately changing of the guard at Arlington National Cemetery. There more museums in DC than you could see in a year, monuments and historical sites to keep you busy for a lifetime.

#22. Zurich, Switzerland
This formerly staid banking capital has experienced such a creative explosion in recent years, and such a mushrooming of innovative bars, restaurants and shops, that Zurich resembles Berlin’s salad days of the mid-1980s and early ’90s. Zurich remains Switzerland’s commercial and financial hub, and the canton is the country’s most affluent. Explore the city’s atmospheric cobblestone Old Town, window-shop glittering boutiques and jewelers lining upmarket Bahnhofstrasse, take a cruise on the lake or stand on the Top of Europe in the surrounding Alps.

#21. Cairns, Australia
Tropical, wild and rugged, Queensland’s Far North )(the region surrounding Cairns) proves the theory that size doesn’t matter. Although small geographically, this stunning destination contains the richest pockets of biodiversity in Australia, if not the world. The dense and ancient rainforests of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area coat the landscape, spilling out onto gorgeous beaches. Offshore lies the spectacular Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. From Cairns you can easily swim the Great Barrier Reef, snorkel past tropical fish, cruise from Port Douglas, and trek through the rainforest.

#20. Vienna, Austria
Grandiose Vienna was the showpiece of the all-conquering Habsburg dynasty. Monumental edifices line the city center, world-class museums burst with treasures, white stallions strut their way down mirrored halls, and renowned orchestras and angelic choirboys perform in lavish concert halls. Vienna has plenty of lower-brow pleasures too – walks in the woods, the river, indulgent evenings in its renowned wine taverns.

#19. Orlando, Florida
Orlando is many things to many people. If you have kids, Orlando is home to the planet’s top theme parks (Disney and Universal). If you love the outdoors, Orlando is within easy reach of the Florida Everglades and untrammeled natural areas. If you love space, you’re not far from the Kennedy Space Center.

#18. Athens, Greece
Redolent with mythology, loaded with art and architecture, Athens is an affable city enlivened by outdoor cafes, gardens and urban eccentrics. The city may look like a concrete jungle, but beyond this off-putting veneer it has heaps of charm. Almost every house and apartment has a balcony hanging with geraniums, and many of the city’s streets and squares are fringed with orange trees. Away from the museums and monuments, the Acropolis and Omonia Square, Athens has a lively outdoor culture and zest for life. Get to know the city better on a private walking tour, or use Athens as a base to tour surrounding highlights like the Temple of Apollo at Delphi or to cruise to the islands.

#17. Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Amsterdam is one of the world’s best hangouts, a canny blend of old and new: radical squatter art installations hang off 17th-century eaves, BMWs give way to bicycles, and triple-strength monk-made beer is served in steel and glass cafes. Amsterdam combines big city exuberance with small-town manageability; it doesn’t take more than chaining your bike to a bridge to feel like you’ve got a handle on the place.

#16. Los Angeles, California
The City of Angels is home to Hollywood, mega-amusements such as Disneyland and Universal Studios, and some of the world’s fanciest homes and neighborhoods. And you will not be the first visitor to LA who wants to see and do it all! Throw in beaches, great food and a stellar nightlife, and LA does a good job pleasing its visitors. Just please, let’s not talk about the traffic.

#15. Milan, Italy
Milano is Italy’s economic engine room, home to Italy’s stock market and business centers. This stylish city is also the world’s design capital and rivals Paris as a leading fashion center. Milan is all about worldly pleasures and getting around with good Milan tips and suggestions is key. Shopping is of almost religious significance. Theater and film flourish in this fashionable milieu, as does a hopping club scene and a slew of tempting restaurants. For visitors one of the highlights is Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper in Santa Maria delle Grazie. Milan’s La Scala is one of the world’s best known opera houses.

#14. Madrid, Spain
Madrid may not have the Roman origins that get city historians excited, but it oozes an ebullience that rarely fails to move. This is Spain’s headiest city, where the reveling lasts long into the night and life is seized with the teeth and both hands. Strangers quickly become friends, passion blooms in an instant, and visitors are swiftly addicted to the city’s charms. After a few days in Madrid you will not want to leave. Glide your way through the Royal Palace, the Paseo del Prado and the Puerta de Alcalá, watch a dazzling flamenco show, or simply sample the delicious tapas of Spain’s capital.

#13. Barcelona, Spain
Barcelona has transformed itself from smug backwater into one of the most dynamic and stylish cities in the world. Summer is serious party time, with week-long fiesta fun. But year-round the city sizzles – food, fashion, style, music and good times. The buildings, many the work of the eccentric genius Gaudí, will blow you away. The art, with significant collections by Picasso and Miró, will make you giddy all over.

#12. Munich, Germany
Munich, rivaled only by Berlin as Germany’s most popular destination, is a sophisticated city that enjoys contradicting itself. Don some ironic lederhosen and head down to the capital of Bavaria, where cutesy folk traditions ride alongside BMWs and Black Forest cake shares the table with haute cuisine. The city is a haven for all sorts of culture, with a staggering array of museums, a vibrant arts scene and the infamous revels of Oktoberfest. It’s also a handy jumping-off point for visiting the “fairytale” castles of Neuschwanstein and Linderhof.

#11. Venice, Italy

For a thousand years Venice was one of the most enduring mercantile sea powers on the face of the earth. Today the brilliance and influence have long since faded, leaving a town of tarnished glories, out of time and out of place, so achingly beautiful it’s hard not to look for the back of the set. It is possible to get beneath the surface of this city, you just need patience (and a good guide!). The highlights for travelers here include a gondola ride down the canals, St. Mark’s Basilica, and the labyrinth of narrow passageways, alleys, and delicate bridges that make up this one-of-a-kind city.

#10. Melbourne, Australia

One of the world’s most livable cities, Melbourne is cosmopolitan and cultivated. The city’s shopping, dining, coffee culture and sheer style are legendary, and its lively music scene has launched some of Australia’s most iconic bands and musicians. While sightseeing in Melbourne, you’ll discover Melburnians are equally passionate about football and ballet, fashion and restaurants. They are ravenous for music and hot for theater. For travelers highlights include Melbourne’s wine country (Yarra Valley), Phillip Island,  and the famous Great Ocean Road.

#9. San Francisco, California

San Francisco has an atmosphere of genteel chic mixed with offbeat innovation and a self-effacing quality so blatantly missing from brassy New York and star-struck LA. Its hilly streets provide some gorgeous glimpses of the sparkling bay and its famous bridges. The treats of San Francisco are not just for locals. The basic pleasures of life here – wonderful food, sparkling nightlife and those glorious views – are there for everyone. Watch the fog roll across Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge, as the sunset lights up the windows across the bay, and prepare to leave your heart.

#8. Sydney, Australia

Sydney is Australia’s oldest city, the economic powerhouse of the nation and the country’s capital in everything but name. It’s blessed with sun-drenched natural attractions, dizzy skyscrapers, delicious and daring restaurants, superb shopping and friendly folk. And want to know what to see in Sydney? Although it’s come a long way from its convict beginnings, Sydney still has a rough and ready energy, an invigorating blend of the old and the new, the raw and the refined. While high culture attracts some to the Opera House, bohemian history and gaudy nightlife attract others to Kings Cross.

#7. Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan’s capital city, is a place where the urgent rhythms of consumer culture collide with the quieter moments that linger from older traditions. It is hectic madness leavened by the most Zen-like calm; a wonderful and worldly culture where tradition constantly mixes with the modern. From visiting ancient shrines to the latest in shopping, watching Sumo wrestling to learning calligraphy, the range of things to do in Tokyo is breathtaking. It’s also a good jumping-off point for trips to iconic Mt Fuji.

#6. Florence, Italy
The cultural and historical impact of Florence is overwhelming. Cradle of the Renaissance and home of Machiavelli, Michelangelo and the Medici, the city seems unfairly over-blessed with art, culture and history. Its striking buildings, formidable galleries and treasure-crammed churches attest to the Florentine love of display. Even long after it had set on the political and economic horizon, Florence upheld its elegant appearance: its skyline, all russet rooftops and lofty domes, is indeed picturesque. Roll into Florence and experience the panoramic views, the wondrous sight of Michelangelo’s David, and the incredible history of the old city center.

#5. London, England
London – the grand resonance of its very name suggests history and might. Its opportunities for entertainment by day and night go on and on and on. It’s a city that exhilarates and intimidates, a Monopoly board studded with stellar sights. It’s a cosmopolitan mix of Third and First Worlds, the stubbornly traditional and the proudly avant-garde. But somehow – between ‘er Majesty and Boy George, Bow Bells and Big Ben, the Millennium Dome and the 2012 Olympics – it all hangs together.
Coast along the Thames River, pass Big Ben and Parliament, and take part in history as you walk through Shakespeare’s Globe in London.

#4. New York City, New York
New York is a city made for explorers: the more you roam in New York, the more you discover, the more you’ll want to see — and the more you’ll be thrilled by the range of things to do in New York City. New York is a densely packed mass of humanity. Whomever you encounter, from New York’s famous Broadway to the Empire State Building, in giddy spring or gilded fall, in quiet summer or cozy winter, you can be sure of one thing: it’ll be the real deal.

#3. Rome, Italy
It’s hard to say what you’ll find most breathtaking about the Eternal City – the Vatican, the Forum, the top speed of a Fiat Bambino, the Colosseum, or the bill for your caffe latte. Make like the locals and indulge your senses in the pleasures the city has to offer, from the grandiose thrill of feeling centuries of turbulent history under your feet to the small but potent intoxication of eating chestnut gelato on a hot day. Browse all things to do in Rome or check out some highlights below.

#2. Las Vegas, Nevada
Not so long ago, people came to Las Vegas for the gambling and buffets. Today Las Vegas is all about serious fun – from big-name shows and events to after-hours night clubbing. Las Vegas is also a popular destination for family trips and fine dining. And if you tire of the action and gambling on The Strip, take in some of America’s most beautiful desert scenery on a day trip to the Grand Canyon’s West and South rims, the Hoover Dam… the possibilities here are truly endless.

#1. Paris, France
Paris is a city to be immersed in, with boulevards, monuments, works of art and magical lights. It’s a city to taste: cheese, chocolate, wine, bread. And it’s a city to hear: opera, jazz or world music, or perhaps you just like the sound of the metro cars whooshing by on their rubber wheels. First-time visitors often arrive in Paris with all sorts of expectations: of grand vistas, of intellectuals discussing weighty matters in cafes, of romance along the Seine, of sexy cabaret revues. It’s all here, but don’t forget to explore a little and see Paris’ backstreets too.

Editor’s Note: Above post is the penultimate installment of the 2010 Viator Traveler Awards. This is an annual awards competition where we let our travelers select the top things to do and see in each of the major regions we serve. The awards culminate in the Viator Top 50 Travel Destinations and our annual list of the world’s Top 25 most travel-inspiring attractions.

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