TripAdvisor awards: What's the world’s best destination?

TripAdvisor awards: What's the world’s best destination?

TripAdvisor's Travelers’ Choice Awards 2012 pick out the world’s best hotels and destinations, with beaches a strong point for the United States
Tripadvisor Travelers' Choice Awards 2012
Cape Town -- world's best destination.

Cape Town is the best destination in the world; The Phoenix Resort in Belize is the best hotel; and the United States is home to seven of the top 25 beaches in the world.

That’s according to travel review site TripAdvisor, which has released the results of its 2012 Travelers’ Choice Awards, based on millions of user reviews. 

Cape Town beat Sydney into second place in the destinations category. Machu Picchu came in third, Paris in fourth and Rio de Janeiro in fifth.

Is Cape Town your favorite destination? Let us know in the comments. 

“Cape Town glistens at the southern toe of the African continent,” the site said, picking out Table Mountain and Robben Island as highlights.

Reviewer Glo360 gushed about The Phoenix Resort, saying “Awesome. Everything was perfect. Gorgeous accommodations… we had a private yoga class on our veranda.”

Providenciales was acclaimed as the world’s best beach, with TripAdvisor saying, “A bountiful barrier reef makes the Turks and Caicos island of Providenciales a hot spot for families, snorkelers and divers.”

The awards named the top 25 places in various categories including Best Family Vacations and Best Food and Wine Destinations, as well as various subcategories of hotels: Trendiest Hotels, Best Bargain Hotels and Best Luxury Hotels, among others.

But Tripadvisor's review system has come under scrutiny over the last year, with one online "reputation" company claiming up to 10 million of Tripadvisor's 50 million reviews may be fake. Last year TripAdvisor also replaced its "Reviews you can trust" slogan on its hotel listings with "Reviews from our community."

Nearly 4,000 hotels were recognized in the awards, with Belize home to two of the top three hotels in the world and Ireland home to two of the top 10.

World’s Best Destinations

  1. Cape Town, South Africa
  2. Sydney, Australia
  3. Machu Picchu, Peru
  4. Paris, France
  5. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  6. New York City, United States
  7. Rome, Italy
  8. London, England
  9. Barcelona, Spain
  10. Hong Kong, China
  11. Kyoto, Japan
  12. Queenstown, New Zealand
  13. Jerusalem, Israel
  14. Siem Reap, Cambodia
  15. Prague, Czech Republic

Click here for the full 25 

World’s Best Hotels

  1. The Phoenix Resort, San Pedro, Belize
  2. Anastasis Apartments, Imerovigli, Greece
  3. Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort, Hopkins, Belize
  4. Riad Kniza, Marrakech, Morocco
  5. Derwent House Boutique Hotel, Cape Town, South Africa
  6. Castlewood House, Dingle, Ireland
  7. Palais Amani, Fes, Morocco
  8. LockLein County House, Killarney, Ireland
  9. Tambo del Inka, Urubamba, Peru
  10. Golden Well (U Zlate Studne), Prague, Czech Republic
  11. Elysian Hotel Chicago, Chicago, United States
  12. Wellness Hotel Casa Barca, Malcesine, Italy
  13. Strandhill Lodge and Suites Hotel, Strandhill, Ireland
  14. Alchymist Residence Nosticova, Prague, Czech Republic
  15. Charterouse Hotel, Torquay, England

Click here for the full 25 

World’s Best Beaches

  1. Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
  2. Boracay, Philippines
  3. Palm/Eagle Beach, Aruba
  4. Negril, Jamaica
  5. Tulum, Mexico
  6. Myrtle Beach, United States
  7. Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman
  8. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
  9. Cape May, United States
  10. Santa Teresa, Costa Rica
  11. Maldives
  12. Panama City Beach, United States
  13. Miami Beach, United States
  14. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
  15. Isla Mujeres, Mexico

Click here for the full 25