Kochi, the historic port city in Kerala, has topped as trending destination in the list of 25 tourist places of the world, according to the 2020 Travellers' Choice Destination awards.
This Indian port city has earned its bucket list status, seeing the biggest spike in top reviews, ratings, and traveller interest on online travel company Tripadvisor over the last year.
A blending of small villages on the south-western coast created the current incarnation of Kochi (or Cochin), where sunset strolls, sampling fresh fish from seaside vendors and boat rides through the islands just offshore are all part of the charm.
"It's fantastic to see Indian destinations making their presence felt on the world map and given this achievement is based on feedback and growing interest from travellers, it becomes even more noteworthy.
"Everyone seeks inspiration from various quarters while planning their travel and the best trips often turn out to be inspired and guided by people similar to you who've been there before," Tripadvisor India country manager Nikhil Ganju said.
Kochi was followed by Luzon in the Philippines, Porto in Portugal, Porto Seguro in Brazil, Gramado in Brazil, Lombok in Indonesia, Da Nang in Vietnam, Zakynthos in Greece, Tel Aviv in Israel and Krakow in Poland.
"It is a proud moment for Kerala Tourism that Kochi is named the world's number one trending destination on Tripadvisor. It is to the credit of excellent tourism marketing and promotion strategy of the government and enterprising tourism industry partners. This achievement will propel Kochi and Kerala to great heights in the Tourism sector," Kerala Minister for Tourism Kadakampally Surendran said.
Meanwhile, Agra in Uttar Pradesh has secured 25th position in the 'emerging' destination category, an indicator of up and coming hotspots.
Kaliningrad in Russia topped the global list of 25 destination followed by Saranda in Albania, Beirut in Lebanon, Luxor in Egypt, Naoussa in Greece, Rugen Island in Germany, Phu Quoc Island in Vietnam, Monopoli in Italy, La Paz in Mexico and Curaao in the Caribbean.
Trending and emerging destination award-winners were determined using an algorithm that measured year-over-year increase in positive Tripadvisor traveller review ratings for accommodations, restaurants and attractions, and increase in booking interest and searches across destinations worldwide.