Top 100 Hotels in the World

This year’s list of the best 100 hotels — which include exclusive safari lodges, urban sanctuaries, and family-friendly beach resorts — will inspire some serious wanderlust.

At least, he followed their lead by checking himself in to the Brando, an all-villa private-island resort in French Polynesia this past March. Turns out, our readers had a similar need for some R&R — this year, they voted the property the second best in the entire world. “We are very busy with work and hardly get a chance to relax,” said one fan. “At the Brando, if you can’t relax and enjoy yourself — it’s your own fault.”
Every year for our World’s Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Hotels were classified as City or Resort based on their locations and amenities.

But as it turns out, you don’t necessarily have to fly halfway across the globe to stay in a World’s Best Award–winning property. Twenty-seven of the top 100 hotels were located right here in the United States, and they range from an old-school Floridian retreat (Gasparilla Inn & Club) to a discreet New York City boutique hotel (the Surrey). New to the list this year: the Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch, a Wyoming property where travelers can fly-fish, hike, skeet shoot, or go horseback riding among some 30,000 acres of wilderness.

Only 17 hotels out of the top 100 were in urban locations, which, perhaps, in our 24/7 connected world, speaks to our readers' need to be in the great outdoors — be it on a beach in the Bahamas (Kamalame Cay), in the jungles of Costa Rica (Nayara Springs), or on the floodplains of Botswana (andBeyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp). The urban retreats that did make the list spanned the globe, and were in locations that may seem surprising. The Temple House, a 100-room property set in a Qing dynasty building in up-and-coming Chengdu, China, was No. 19, while the Alfond Inn, an Orlando-area property known for its contemporary art collection, was No. 62.

Just where in the world is our No. 1 winner? You’ll need a passport to get there, and you’ll probably want to pack a bathing suit. But leave the surfboard at home — the resort’s got you covered.
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InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort

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99. (tie) InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort, Vietnam

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Wilderness Safaris Little Kulala

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99. (tie) Wilderness Safaris Little Kulala, Sossusvlei, Namibia

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Tierra Patagonia Hotel & Spa

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98. Tierra Patagonia Hotel & Spa, Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

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Auberge de Soleil

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97. Auberge du Soleil, Rutherford, California

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The Inn at Hastings Park

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96. Inn at Hastings Park, Lexington, Massachusetts

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Little Palm Island

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95. Little Palm Island Resort & Spa, Little Torch Key, Florida

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Aqualina Miami

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94. Acqualina Resort & Spa, Sunny Isles Beach, Florida

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St. Regis Osaka

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92. (tie) St. Regis, Osaka, Japan

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Katikies Hotel

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92. (tie) Katikies Hotel, Santorini, Greece

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The Inn and Club at Harbour Town

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91. Inn & Club at Harbour Town, Hilton Head, South Carolina

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Tambo del Inka, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa

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90. Tambo del Inka, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Sacred Valley, Peru

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Shinta Mani Club

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89. Shinta Mani, Siem Reap, Cambodia

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Singita Grumeti

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88. Singita Grumeti, Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

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Las Ventanas al Paraiso, a Rosewood Resort

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87. Las Ventanas al Paraíso, a Rosewood Resort, San José del Cabo, Mexico

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The Chatwal, a Luxury Collection Hotel

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86. The Chatwal, New York City

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Inn at Rancho Santana

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85. Inn at Rancho, Santana Rivas, Nicaragua

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The Oberoi Udaivilas

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84. Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur, India

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White Elephant Village

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82. (tie) White Elephant Village, Nantucket, Massachusetts

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Post Hotel & Spa

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82. (tie) Post Hotel & Spa, Lake Louise, Alberta

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Stephanie Inn

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81. Stephanie Inn, Cannon Beach, Oregon

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The Singular Patagonia

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80. Singular Patagonia, Puerto Bories, Chile

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Capella Ixtapa

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79. Capella Ixtapa, Mexico

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Wilderness Safaris Mombo Camp and Little Mombo Camp

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78. Wilderness Safaris Mombo Camp and Little Mombo Camp, Moremi Game Reserve, Botswana

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Aria Hotel Budapest

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77. Aria Hotel, Budapest

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21c Museum Hotel Oklahoma City

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75. (tie) 21c Museum Hotel, Oklahoma City

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Portrait Firenze

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75. (tie) Portrait Firenze, Florence

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Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta

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74. Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta, Riviera Nayarit, Mexico

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Ellerman House

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73. Ellerman House, Cape Town

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Egerton House Hotel

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72. Egerton House Hotel, London

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Jumeriah at Etihad Towers

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71. Jumeirah at Etihad Towers, Abu Dhabi

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70. Blantyre, Lenox, Massachusetts

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The Coolest New Cars For 2019

The new 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 is the quickest 'Vette ever, with 755 raging horsepower. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Jim Gorzelany

Though sport-utility vehicles and pickup trucks now account for the lion’s share of new-vehicle sales, (to paraphrase Mark Twain) the reports of the passenger car’s death has been greatly exaggerated. Seems there’s still a lot of life left in the genre, as evidenced by the extensive selection of all-new and fully redesigned family sedans, luxury cars, and sport coupes that lead the class of 2019.

Here’s a quick look at 15 of the most significant new cars headed to dealerships, with images for each of them featured in the accompanying slideshow. We’ll take a look at the hottest new SUVs and trucks for 2019 in a separate post.

Aston Martin DBS Superleggera. 

Aston Martin brings back – and combines – two famed nameplates from its storied history for its new flagship coupe, the DBS Superleggera. Gorgeously styled with fluidly flowing body work crafted from carbon fiber, it’s 2+2 interior is equally appealing, with front-seat occupants treated to sport seats upholstered in supple “aromatic” leather and Alcantara. A 5.2-liter twin-turbocharged V12 engine generates a mighty 715 horsepower and, assisted by a performance-enhanced eight-speed automatic transmission, can launch the car to 62 mph in a sudden 3.4 seconds and hit a terrifying top speed of 211 mph. Riding on 21-inch rims and Pirelli P-Zero performance tires, and with assorted performance-enhancing systems at hand, the car is engineered to hug the corners as tightly as a toddler with a teddy bear.

Audi A8.

 A fourth-generation version of Audi’s flagship sedan debuts for 2019 with a fresh design language. A spacious leather and wood trimmed interior coddles its occupants in comfort, and features Audi’s configurable Virtual Cockpit instrumentation, with dual touchscreens with haptic feedback for the infotainment system. Opulent options include heated center console and arm rests, a dual-tablet rear entertainment system, and executive-class rear seats that recline, massage, and feature adjustable head- and footrests. It comes powered by a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 engine with 48-volt “mild hybrid” technology, and rides on an active suspension for improved vehicle dynamics. A new frontal auto-braking safety system can help prevent against crashes with cross-traffic at intersections. The new A8 can even be pulled into and out of a garage or tight parking space remotely.

Bentley Continental GT. 

The third generation of Bentley’s sporty and stately Continental GT coupe bows for 2019, and continues its familiar long-hooded appearance, albeit with added refinement nose to tail. A 6.0-liter W12 engine (it’s like a pair of conjoined V6s) pushes the GT’s hefty curb weight along at a rapid clip (0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds) with 626 horsepower and a forceful 664 pound-feet of torque; top speed is a warp-nine 207 mph. An electronically controlled suspension balances ride comfort and energetic handling abilities via selectable driving modes. As one would expect, the four-seat coupe’s interior is up to Bentley’s over-the-top standards and is upholstered in rich leather and trimmed in wood and piano black finishes. Also, as one would expect, the list of standard features is exhaustive with almost limitless customization available.

BMW M850i xDrive.

 BMW brings back the 8 Series coupe after a 20-year hiatus as an appropriately long, wide, and low slung ride, with what BMW calls “double bubble” contouring. Headlamps incorporate both LED and laser light technology and are said to bethe slimmest used in any BMW to date. An optional carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic roof reduces the coupe’s curb weight and lowers its center of gravity for a notch better handling. Inside, sport seats are trimmed in Merino Individual leather with contrast stitching. The M850i xDrive packs a punch with a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter 530-horsepower V8 engine; mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, it can leap to 60 mph in just 3.6 seconds. All-wheel-drive and a self-parking function come standard, with an adaptive racing-inspired suspension among its many performance-minded options.

Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. 

As automotive enthusiasts wait for a coming mid-engine Corvette, Chevrolet brings back the rip-roaring ZR1 as a bona fide Ferrari fighter. Coming in both coupe (with a removable roof panel) and convertible variants, it’s the fastest ‘Vette ever, thanks to a new dual fuel-injected supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine that channels a speedy 755 horsepower to the rear wheels via either a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission. A model-specific front fascia channels copious amounts of air for propulsion-system and drivetrain cooling. A carbon-fiber “halo” hood is open in the middle to accommodate the supercharger/intercooler assembly. An optional ZTK Track Performance Package includes an adjustable high-wing spoiler for added downforce, a front splitter with carbon-fiber end caps, Michelin summer performance tires, and specific chassis and Magnetic Ride Control system tuning. It’s packed with features and starts at around $120,000

Genesis G70. 

Hyundai’s luxury division debuts this BMW 3 Series-esq rear-drive compact sedan for 2019 with assertive styling. A 2.0-liter with 252 horsepower is standard with a turbocharged 365-horsepower V6 available. An eight-speed automatic transmission with launch control comes standard, though the base rear-drive 2.0-liter model can instead be fitted with a six-speed manual gearbox; all-wheel-drive is optional. A multi-link suspension at the front and rear along with a torque vectoring systemafford entertaining handling, with multiple drive modes at hand to fine-tune powertrain response, steering feel, all-wheel drive torque distribution, suspension firmness, and even the engine’s sound. Standard features include a full rack of accident avoidance systems.

Honda Insight. 

Honda brings back the Insight name, and this time around it’s a midsize four-door hybrid that’s capable of a penny-pinching 55 mpg around town. With a dynamic front end treatment and coupe-like profile it sports a decidedly forceful look. Power comes from an electric-assisted 1.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine with the equivalent of 151 horsepower and a lively 197 pound-feet of torque. Frugal-minded drivers can put the car EV mode for limited all-electric operation, and can increase regenerative braking to help bolster battery charging. Efficient battery packaging enables a spacious 15.1 cubic feet of trunk space, while maintaining a roomy interior. There’s even a selectable sport mode that affords livelier operation.

Hyundai Veloster. 

Hyundai’s small and sporty three-door front-drive hatchback gets a major redesign for 2019 with burlier styling. The standard engine is a 2.0-liter with 147 horsepower, while the Turbo version packs a 1.6-liter turbo-four with 201 horses; the former can be mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission, while the latter offers a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic as an alternative to the manual. The sportiest N version leaps off the line with a 275-horsepower turbo-four and the six-speed manual. Automatic-equipped models include selectable driving modes, while Turbo models feature an active engine sound feature that boosts the exhaust note for added visceral effect. An active cornering vectoring control helps maintain crisp handling. Assorted collision-preventing systems and infotainment features are included with Amazon Alexa, and Android Wear/Apple Watch connectivity available.

Kia Forte. 

Still a great car for younger and budget-minded drivers, Kia refreshes its compact sedan for 2019 and imbues it with handsome styling inside and out that makes it look like a costlier car. A revamped 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine generates an estimated 147 horsepower and can be mated to either a six-speed manual or a gearless CVT automatic transmission. As befits a car with youthful appeal, full smartphone connectivity is included with the Apple Car Play and Android Auto interfaces incorporated; a wireless phone-charging pad is newly available. For safety’s sake, the Forte can now be fitted with forward auto-braking, adaptive cruise control, a blind-spot monitor, and a lane keeping assist system.

Lexus ES.

 The midsize Lexus ES luxury sedan comes in a fully redesigned version for 2019 with added pizazz and personality. It’s longer, lower, and wider, and comes wrapped in dynamically recast bodywork with additional curves and creases and the automaker’s signature spindle-shaped grille. A 3.5-liter V6 engine sends 302-horsepower to the front wheels via a new eight-speed automatic transmission. An F-Sport iteration is newly added to the line and can be fitted an Adaptive Variable Suspension to ratchet up the sedan’s cornering prowess without undue ride harshness. A hybrid version combines a new 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine with an electric motor to realize the equivalent of 215 horsepower at an estimated 44 mpg in city/highway driving. The Apple Car Play interface is new this year – it’s also Amazon Alexa-enabled – with a full range of connectivity and safety features included.

Mercedes-Benz AMG GT Four-Door Coupe. 

Aimed squarely at the Porsche Panamera, this new four-door fastback comes wrapped in assertively muscular styling, and is roomy enough inside to serve as a daily driver. Its long hood can house either an in-line six-cylinder engine with 429 horsepower, or either of two bi-turbo 4.0-liter V8s with 577 or 630 galloping horses; the latter is claimed to reach 60 mph in a scenery-blurring 3.1 seconds. A nine-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive come standard, with a “race start” function enabling peak acceleration. The V8 models include active rear axle steering (at speeds up to 62 mph, the rear wheels point in the opposite direction to the front wheels) for added agility and stability. What’s more, the AMG GT Four-Door Coupe includes its own sporty fragrance and can be fitted with Mercedes’ “energizing” comfort control that adjusts various vehicle functions to relax or refresh the driver and passengers according to predefined programs.

Nissan Altima. 

Nissan gives the midsize Altima Sedan a major makeover for 2019 and infuses it with added technology. The overall look is bolder than before, coming capped with Nissan’s big and buck-toothy “V-motion” front grille. A purposeful interior features both a touchscreen for the infotainment system (with the Android Auto and Apple CarPlay interfaces) and analog controls for intuitive operation. A new 2.0-liter variable-compression turbocharged four-cylinder engine replaces the former V6 and delivers a potent 248 horsepower with a punchy 273 pound-feet of torque. A 2.5-liter four with 188 horsepower comes standard; both are mated to a CVT automatic transmission, with all-wheel-drive newly available. The nearly autonomous ProPILOT system is optional. Among its many available safety features is an automatic rear braking system that prevents the driver from running over stationary objects while in reverse gear.

Toyota Avalon. 

Toyota remakes its full-size Avalon for 2019 as a longer, lower, wider, and more stylish sedan. It’s powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that channels 301 horsepower through the front wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. Meanwhile, the Avalon Hybrid features a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gas engine that’s augmented by an electric motor to realize the equivalent of 215 horsepower; mated to a gearless CVT automatic it’s rated at 43 mpg in city driving. The Avalon’s spacious interior is trimmed in piano black, wood, and aluminum, and features soft-touch surfaces for a luxury look and feel. Performance-enhancing options include an adaptive variable suspension with selectable driving modes. Standard safety systems are plentiful as is smartwatch, Amazon Alexa, and Apple CarPlay compatibility; the options list includes an ear-splitting 1,200-watt JBL audio system.

Toyota Corolla Hatchback. 

Replacing the former Corolla (Scion) iM is a revamped and renamed compact Corolla Hatchback. Longer, lower and wider, it gets fresh styling and a new 2.0-liter direct-injected four-cylinder engine that puts 168 horsepower to the road via a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT automatic with 10 simulated “gearshifts.” A revised suspension affords a livelier attitude. Standard safety features include forward auto-braking with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, a lane keeping system, and automatic high beam headlamps. Full connectivity is standard and includes Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa interfaces.

Volkswagen Arteon. 

The artfully styled VW Arteon “four door coupe” replaces the CC at the top of Volkswagen’s car line for 2019 with added style and substance. It rides on a new platform that’s stretches the former CC's wheelbase by five inches; along with a wider body, this affords additional interior room. Inside, the cabin is trimmed in rich looking materials, with leatherette upholstery standard and Nappa leather optional. It comes powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injected 268-horsepower four-cylinder engine that’s mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission; all-wheel-drive is available across the line. The suspension features a standard adaptive damping system to balance the car’s ride and handling characteristics. A host of accident-avoidance features come standard, with items like stop-and-go adaptive cruise control, Digital Cockpit reconfigurable displays, and a hands-free trunk release optional.

The 10 Most Popular Cities

Every year, Mastercard puts together its Global Destination Cities Index, which ranks more than 130 cities based on how popular they are with tourists. The survey not only culls visitor numbers, and travel spending data, like airline ticket purchases and souvenir purchases, but also predicts where people will be visiting within the next year. The company just released its most recent index, with the places on track to be 2017's most visited cities. Check out how how this year's list stacks up. (Hint: You might want to buy your tickets to Asia now.) Counting down... This article was originally published in 2015. It has been updated with new information.

10. Istanbul, Turkey

Number of projected overnight visitors: 9.24 million
Despite terrorist attacks on several of the city's tourist centers in 2016 and political instability, people aren't hiding from Istanbul. The city continues to attract visitors with its historic architecture, gorgeous boutiques, and inventive restaurants. In fact, of all the cities studied in this survey, dining consumes the greatest percentage of visitor spend in Istanbul (33.6 percent).

9. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Number of projected overnight visitors: 12.08 million
One of the world's best cities for street food has also proven to be an all-around holiday hot spot. While the majority of the travel across the study's cities are conducted for leisure (as opposed to business), Kuala Lumpur still has the largest percentage of visitors there on vacation (a whopping 92.2 percent).

8. New York City

Number of projected overnight visitors: 12.36 million
From the global cuisine of Queens to the sky-high hotels of Midtown, there's no city on earth quite as energetic (or caffeinated) as New York. We can't blame overnight visitors for spending $17.02 billion here in 2016 alone (which is nothing compared to Dubai, but we'll get to that later).

7. Seoul, South Korea

Number of projected overnight visitors: 12.44 million
Seoul has emerged as one of the world's leading fashion and beauty capitals, with a travel-worthy spa scene and nocturnal vendors in trendy neighborhoods. No surprise, then, that tourists spend more on shopping while in Seoul (56.5 percent) than in any other city surveyed.

6. Tokyo, Japan

Number of projected overnight visitors: 12.51 million
With new air routes, museum openings, and preparations in place to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, there's never been a better time to visit the best city in the world, as voted by our readers.

5. Singapore

Number of projected overnight visitors: 13.45 million
Singapore has the world's best airport (hedge mazes included) and most Instagram-able hotel, both of which only add to the already appealing city. And with Norwegian launching new low-cost flights between London and Singapore this fall, reaching the Lion City is only getting easier.

4. Dubai, U.A.E.

Number of projected overnight visitors: 16.01 million
It seems like Dubai will never stop trying to outdo itself. Within the past year, the city announced plans for a miniature replica of Venice, flying drone taxis, and two new artificial islands. But all that pomp seems to be paying off—quite literally. Tourists spent an incredible $28.50 billion there in 2016.

3. Paris, France

Number of projected overnight visitors: 16.13 million
It's nearly impossible to resist the charms of France's capital—and more than 16 million travelers obviously agree. The city is known for its chic shopping and inimitable restaurants, but lodging actually proved to be the most expensive part of trips to Paris, accounting for 44.8 percent of tourists' spending.

2. London, U.K.

Number of projected overnight visitors: 20.01 million
There's so much to do in London, it bears repeat visits; perhaps that explains why its number of visitors jumped past the 20 million mark this year. Luckily, an efficient transportation system means that less of the budget is spent on transit here (only 4.3 percent) than in any other city on the list, which frees you up to spend your dollars at trendy new restaurants like Gymkhana or newly renovated Blue Bar in The Berkeley hotel.

1. Bangkok, Thailand

Number of projected overnight visitors: 20.19 million
For the second year running, Bangkok is set to be the most popular city for international travelers, thanks in large part to its appealing mix of historical sites and modern hot spots: the gilded Grand Palace complex, the towering Peninsula Bangkok, the canals and alleys filled with street food vendors—and that's just the start. Even with all that humidity, this city is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon.

The Worlds 30 Best Places to Visit in 2017-18

14. Grand Canyon

No photos of the Grand Canyon can convey the sheer magnitude of this natural wonder, which measures 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and more than a mile deep. Nearly 6 million people visited the national park in 2016 to take in the grandeur of the red and orange formation. There are plenty of ways to enjoy this UNESCO World Heritage site: Travelers can hike the North Rim, horseback ride on the Bright Angel Trail or raft down the Colorado River, among other pursuits.

13. Honolulu-Oahu

Thanks to its idyllic scenery, historic sites and multitude of oceanfront resorts along Waikiki Beach, this Hawaiian island – and its capital, Honolulu – has long been considered a premier vacation destination. As such, it's got something for every type of traveler. Adventure seekers can surf along the North Shore, history buffs and culture hounds can visit Pearl Harbor and 'Iolani Palace, and honeymooners can pamper themselves with luxury spa treatments and high-end dining.

12. Santorini, Greece

The white and pastel-hued villages dotting the coastline of this Greek island seem to be straight out of a postcard. Shorelines are sprinkled with colorful beaches, including black sands at Kamari Beach, a crimson-hued shoreline at the aptly named Red Beach and cobalt waters everywhere. A visit here is also sure to include an abundance of fresh Mediterranean fare and locally made vino.

11. Amalfi Coast, Italy

Five million people can't be wrong. That's how many tourists travel to this Italian coastal region annually. They come for the breathtaking views from seaside towns, where stacks of brightly colored houses are perched on the cliffs. While the Amalfi Coast's topography is what initially draws travelers, its old-world charms, rich cultural history and fresh Italian cuisine convince them to come back year after year. For a posh getaway, stay along the coast in the town of Positano.

10. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Dubai is home to a bevy of superlatives, including the tallest building in the world (Burj Khalifa at 2,717 feet), the world's largest indoor theme park (IMG Worlds of Adventure), the largest man-made marina in the world and the world's first rotating skyscraper, set to open in 2020. If those aren't enough reasons to visit, the city is also home to an indoor ski center, one of the globe's largest shopping malls and multiple public beaches – not to mention a handful of man-made islands. A trip here won't be cheap, but it's worth it.

9. Barcelona, Spain

This city's diverse and distinguished architecture differentiates Barcelona from other European destinations. The influence of Antoni Gaudí can be seen throughout the city in places like Güell Park, La Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlló. Other spectacular structures include the Palace of Catalan Music, the Cathedral of Santa Eulalia and the Barri Gótic neighborhood. Plus, one of the most important buildings to Barcelona residents (and fútbol fans), the Camp Nou Stadium, is home to one of the most popular soccer teams in the world, FC Barcelona.

8. Prague

Visit the capital of the Czech Republic to step back in time. Gothic structures stretching from the Old Town Square to Prague Castle (the largest coherent castle complex in the world) will make you feel as if you're in a fairy tale. You'll also want to walk across the Charles Bridge (don't forget to rub one of the 30 saint statues for luck) and make time to marvel at the Prague Astronomical Clock. What's more, you're more likely to score better discounts and travel deals in Prague than neighboring European hot spots.

7. Florence, Italy

With roots that can be dated back to 59 B.C., this ancient city is home to a number of attractions that belong on your bucket list. The oldest building in the city, the Battistero, dates back to the 11th century, and the skyline has been dominated by the Duomo since the 14th century. But a visit here isn't all about touring historical sites – you'll want to save time for wandering the many piazze (plazas) and sampling the delectable regional fare.

6. New York City

From Frank Sinatra to Jay Z, countless musicians have tried to capture the essence of New York City in song, but to get a real impression of the concrete jungle you've got to experience it for yourself. You'll want to cross landmarks like the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty off your bucket list, but you'll find more cultural pastimes just as exciting. Take in a Broadway show, people-watch in Central Park or pull out your credit card to shop on Fifth Avenue. There are so many options, you'll need more than one trip to see it all.

5. Paris

Poet Allen Ginsberg once wrote, "You can't escape the past in Paris, and yet what's so wonderful about it is that the past and present intermingle so intangibly that it doesn't seem to burden." First-time visitors can spend their days soaking up historical sites, such as the Arc de Triomphe, Château de Versailles and, of course, the Eiffel Tower. But you'll need more than one visit to fully enjoy the city's chic arrondissements (districts), world-famous cuisine and unforgettable atmosphere.

4. London

Although the slogan "Keep Calm and Carry On" was created as a morale booster for the city in 1939, it still encompasses the London way of life. The dizzying array of sights, sounds and smells mingle with the antique and the contemporary in London. Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace will captivate visitors who are intrigued by the royal family, while more modern highlights, including the West End Theatre District and Portobello Road Market, will appeal to culture hounds. No matter which side of London captures your heart, the culture and decorum of this diverse city is timeless.

3. Porto, Portugal

This coastal Portuguese city has all the elements of a world-class travel destination: a striking shoreline, charming architecture and historic sites, plus a one-of-a-kind export – port wine. Nicknamed the City of Bridges, Porto is home to numerous iron bridges including the Dom Luís I Bridge designed by a student of Gustave Eiffel (the mastermind behind the Eiffel Tower). When not admiring the stunning structures, travelers can relax along intimate beaches or sample port wine at historic cellars like Sandeman or Offley.

2. Sydney

There's more to this Australian city than iconic attractions like the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Part laid-back beach town, part sprawling metropolis and part cultural retreat, Sydney has many facets that please a variety of travelers. Surfers and landlubbers can play along Bondi Beach, amateur photographers can snap pictures of the harbor from Mrs. Macquarie's Chair and history buffs can get lost in the Hyde Park Barracks Museum. No matter your interests, you're sure to leave with unique memories you can only get in Sydney.

1. Rome

Rome is the world's best place to visit in 2017-18. Though its mystic roots are debated by historians, travelers agree that there's something mysterious about the Eternal City, be it the ghosts of the Colosseum or the ruins of the Roman Forum. Since the days of the Roman Empire, Italy's capital city has influenced art, government and architecture. Today it's a modern, cosmopolitan city where fashion, business and award-winning cuisine complement the ancient historic sites the city is known for.

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The Worlds 30 Best Places to Visit in 2017-18

Plan your dream vacation to one of these superlative destinations.
The world is full of diverse destinations that are waiting to be explored. But with so many options, it can be hard to narrow down your bucket list. That's why U.S. News used a methodology that takes into account expert and editor analysis and reader votes to determine which destinations qualify for a spot on the list of the World's Best Places to Visit. This year's ranking includes sprawling European metropolises, picturesque Caribbean islands, quaint mountain towns and exquisite natural wonders that are sure to wow every type of traveler.

30. St. Lucia

Lush rainforests, majestic mountains and romantic resorts are all reasons to visit this Caribbean island. A haven for honeymooners, St. Lucia offers the perfect mix of seclusion, relaxation and adventure. To take in the spectacular landscape, plan to hike the Piton Mountains or snorkel and scuba dive in the waters of Anse Chastanet.

29. Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Tucked away less than 60 miles south of Yellowstone National Park, Jackson Hole sees an influx of winter travelers looking to hit the slopes at upscale ski resorts. But you'd be remiss to think that's all there is to do in this small Wyoming town. Visit the neighboring Grand Teton National Park for awe-inspiring vistas, catch a glimpse of majestic animals at the National Elk Refuge or relax sore muscles in the Granite Hot Springs.

28. Banff, Alberta

This Canadian destination will bring out the explorer in anyone who visits. From hiking and whitewater rafting to skiing and snowboarding, Banff offers travelers an abundance of year-round outdoor activities. The Lake Louise Ski Resort is one of the largest in North America and the striking photo ops of the Canadian Rockies from Moraine Lake can't be underestimated.

27. Machu Picchu 

According to travelers, a visit to this Peruvian UNESCO World Heritage site is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. Located in the Andes Mountains, the lost city of the Incas features 12 acres of temples, aqueducts and gardens for travelers to discover. Spend a few days acclimating to the altitude in the neighboring city of Cusco, where you can soak up a mix of Incan and Spanish cultures.

26. Great Barrier Reef

It's easy to see why the Great Barrier Reef is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World – it stretches nearly 1,500 miles along the eastern coastline of Australia and features 3,000 coral reefs, 600 islands and more than 1,600 species of fish. Travelers can see these amazing natural structures from the air or underwater. However, large amounts of coral bleaching (caused by rising ocean temperatures) threaten to destroy this massive marine life habitat, so plan your visit soon to see this awesome sight up close.

25. Park City, Utah

For a luxury ski vacation, look no further than Park City. Popular upscale mountain resorts, specifically Deer Valley and Park City Mountain, provide some of the best ski conditions in the U.S. Even if you're not a powder hound, sites like the Guardsman Pass Scenic Backway and Utah Olympic Park will keep you entertained. For a dose of culture, plan your visit in January, when celebrities descend on the town for the annual Sundance Film Festival.

24. The British Virgin Islands

One look at the aquamarine waters that surround the British Virgin Islands and you'll see why they're consistently rated a top Caribbean destination. Sure, other islands have white sand beaches too, but the British Virgin Islands aren't crowded with megaresorts or cruise ports. Instead, the chain of 60 islands values exclusivity and luxury, so you'll want to bring your credit card along.

23. Costa Rica

Nature enthusiasts looking to go off the grid should travel to Costa Rica. Home to a diverse landscape of tropical rainforests, volcanic mountains, pristine beaches and wildlife reserves, this Central American country draws adventure seekers and animal lovers alike. Explore the Nicoya Peninsula before heading to the remote Tortuguero National Park to spot exotic wildlife.

22. Yosemite National Park

There's no shortage of magnificent photo ops in this California national park, but you'll have to climb to reach the best vantage points. Famous hiking trails include the daunting Half Dome and the high altitude (but more accessible) Glacier Point lookout. Never fear – if heights aren't your thing, there are plenty of less strenuous options found along Mist Trail and Tuolumne Meadows.

21. Tahiti, French Polynesia

From luxurious bungalows suspended over clear turquoise waters to lush vegetation and stunning waterfalls, Tahiti is all about basking in the colorful landscape. The largest island in French Polynesia is ideal for those seeking solitude, but areas like La Plage de Maui and Plage du Taharuu are also popular with tourists.

20. San Sebastian, Spain

You're probably familiar with Spanish hot spots like Madrid and Barcelona, but the northern coastal town of San Sebastian deserves a spot on your bucket list, too. Known for its gorgeous beaches and unique culture, San Sebastian offers a small-town atmosphere influenced by Basque Country. Foodies are also in for a treat as the region is famous for its pintxos – the Basque version of tapas. Explore the city's pintxos bars on your own or with an organized tour group.

19. Phuket, Thailand

The largest island in Thailand boasts enough marvels to impress any traveler. You'll find wide sandy beaches, limestone caves and distinctive rock formations. If the scenery doesn't amaze you, then the lavish spas, upscale dining, fine art galleries and swanky hotels just might. Visit during the dry season (November to April) to experience both indoor and outdoor attractions at their best.

18. Breckenridge, Colorado

This Colorado town is home to fewer than 5,000 people, but its small size hasn't kept it from becoming one of the best winter sports destinations in America. Travelers love schussing the slopes at local ski resorts in the winter, and hopping in the car for a scenic mountain drive along Boreas Pass Road in the warmer months. Visitors should also explore the quaint Main Street, which is full of boutique shops and restaurants. Plus, its location only 80 miles southwest of Denver makes Breckenridge one of the most accessible skiing and snowboarding spots in Colorado.

17. Vancouver, British Columbia

An easy hop over the border from Seattle, this Canadian city embraces the great outdoors. Hiking, skiing and whitewater rafting are just a few activities visitors can enjoy. What's more, attractions such as Stanley Park (home to a water park and the Vancouver Aquarium) and Granville Island make Vancouver a great choice for families. Pop culture aficionados will also appreciate the city's connection to Hollywood movies (it's a popular filming location) and its lively arts scene.

16. Serengeti National Park

Serengeti National Park offers an unparalleled experience for travelers. Located in northern Tanzania, the 5,700-square-mile wildlife park is home to The Great Migration – the annual movement of millions of animals in search of food and breeding grounds. Keep your eyes peeled for herds of zebras, gazelles, baboons and spotted hyenas, just to name a few. Increase your chances of catching a glimpse of wildlife by visiting the southern part of the park during the wet season (December to June) or staying along the northern Seregenti during the dry season

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