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Travel + Leisure India & South Asia is back with the 11th edition of its annual flagship property—the readers’ choice India’s Best Awards. This time, we celebrate the best in the travel, hospitality, and lifestyle industries, as chosen by YOU, our readers.
After celebrating everyone’s favourite destinations virtually for two years
Travel + Leisure India & South Asia has returned on-ground to stir excitement once again at the 11th edition of its annual flagship property — the readers’ choice India’s Best Awards. And this year, the celebrations are bigger with the introduction of new categories that will help you rediscover the world.
With international border restrictions easing after pandemic-induced lockdowns, the
traveller’s itch is more real than ever before and the surge in travel is a testimony to that. Moreover, there’re many international destinations to choose from which our readers have been exploring and voting for.
Whether it is taking a trip to the best country, choosing a destination to tie the knot, planning a romantic holiday, savouring local cuisines, enjoying a family getaway, or even lazing on the beach with a cocktail in hand, it’s only natural to want to do so at the best of places and we are here to help you with exactly that.
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These are the best international destinations chosen by you
Dubai is one of the most tourist-friendly cities in the world. Being ahead of its time, the city is also one of the most cosmopolitan, being home to 200 odd nationalities. The exceptional food variety is a reflection of its diverse cultural influences. Dubai is also a haven for thrill seekers with a plethora of options for water sports, skydiving, desert safaris, shopping, and an array of outdoor activities.
Dubai also won the award last year at IBA 2021.
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Singapore is a city that caters to every need. From any cuisine that you crave to a happening nightlife, from world-renowned amusement parks to finding a cosy spot to enjoy nature, you name it and Singapore has it which is why it only made sense for the city to be celebrated in this manner.
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Just like last year, Switzerland bagged the best country title again in the list. It has been consistently ranked among the best countries in the world for travel. Its stunning locales and fairy-tale towns aside, the alpine country is also rich in myriad experiences. For culture enthusiasts and food connoisseurs, it offers a mélange of French, German, and Italian influences.
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This year, Indonesia was voted the best beach destination by the readers and rightly so. Indonesia which is the world’s largest archipelagic state is made up of over 17,000 islands. From Bali to Java and Lombok and Gili Islands, there are ample number of scenic beaches with some of the most unreal sunset views.
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Queensland is situated in the northeastern region of Australia and it is the second-largest state with some of the most surreal beaches hosting magnificent sunsets. Brisbane, the capital of Queensland is a surfer’s paradise and a haven for adrenaline junkies who are a fan of water sports.
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One of the most beautiful travel destinations in the world, Thailand is ideal for anyone looking for a destination wedding spot. From 3-star comfort to 5-star luxury, a collection of hotels caters to every need and budget. For couples planning to impress their guests with delectable food, Thailand is a paradise offering a delectable array of street eats, traditional Thai favourites, and global cuisines at award-winning fine-dining establishments.
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Located in Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Island is a natural island. It is being developed as a tourism-cultural project for nature and Emirati heritage and culture which means that it has some of the most magnificent backdrops. Home to some of the most luxurious hotels serving some delectable bites, Saadiyat Island makes the ultimate one stop spot for destination weddings.
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Maldives is a complete stunner, with clear turquoise lagoons and pristine white-sand beaches making for romantic settings and ultimately the favoured spot of couples. The luxury resorts here offer indulgent stays—from treehouses deep in tropical foliage to private beach villas and overwater suites. Popular honeymoon packages come with relaxing spa treatments for two, Michelin-starred champagne dinners under the stars, and a host of underwater explorations.
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Monaco or officially known as the Principality of Monaco is a sovereign-city state situated on the French Riviera. Also known as the playground for the rich and famous, this microstate has some beautiful views, designer shopping centres, grand casinos, over-the-top bars and human-made beaches. A vacation in Monaco with someone special will become a memory of a lifetime.
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Shopaholics, unite! The word is out and Bicester Village in London is the ultimate shopping spot. From Gucci to Louis Vuitton and Tom Ford, one can find every brand on earth here.
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There is absolutely no shock in recognising the fact that Spain has once again bagged the title of the best culinary destination like last year. With a seemingly endless repertoire of flavoursome, healthy, and exciting traditional dishes, Spain easily counts as one of the top culinary destinations in the world.
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French cuisine has the most Michelin stars to its name so it makes absolute sense that the Editor’s choice award for the best culinary destination will go to France. With its iconic terrace cafes, macarons and other desserts along with baguettes and fine dining, the French cuisine has taken over the culinary world.
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The peninsular state of Qatar offers a heady mix of tradition and modernism for culture enthusiasts, with world-class museums, iconic galleries, inspiring street art, and unique traditions and let’s not forget the cuisines of the world that have been perfected by the restaurants, making it the ideal family vacation destination.
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Whether you want to explore the depths of water or the wild with your family, Australia has all the options you can think of. There is an ample number of museums for the culturally inclined and water sports options for those who are water babies, the plethora of outdoor options makes Australia our top choice for a family vacation destination.
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Hiking, kayaking, ATV off-roading and biking are only some of the options that Virginia in the USA offers to adventure seekers. The best adventure destination has some of the most beautiful national parks and water bodies allowing adrenaline junkies to have the best time.
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Zipling, canyoning, heli-skiing, bungy, off-road driving, caving and rafting are just some of the outdoor adventure options that can be enjoyed in New Zealand. When picturesque views of nature are added to the equation along with the adventure activities, it makes for a bucket list destination for thrill seekers.
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From some of the most happening party places in the world to museums including the Louvre, Abu Dhabi has something to offer everyone and that is why it is the most favoured cultural destination.
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In the Land of the Rising Sun, a culture as ancient as time coexists with a contemporary one that has influences from around the world, making Japan a coveted cultural destination. While historically rich Kyoto and Nara offer a generous serving of traditional Japanese culture, there are also lesser-known experiences that warrant attention which makes it a must-visit destination.
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AlUla, in North-Western Saudi Arabia, is the upcoming destination for tourists. The destination which encompasses natural heritage, beautiful desserts and countless historic treasures is becoming a tourist magnet, thanks to its modern and contemporary culture along with an extremely happening festival calendar.
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Bhutan recently reopened for international travellers after a two-year gap induced due to the pandemic. The natural scenery in this closely guarded nation is unspoilt and that is one of the things that attract tourists. The carbon-neutral country also has a very different approach to tourism and now the visitors to the nation have to pay a sustainable development fee per person per night which goes towards maintaining its eco-friendly policies.
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