The U.S. Tour Operators Association (USTOA) has issued its first “World’s Best” list, ranking destinations in a variety of categories. Italy took top honors, as best destination in four categories: architecture, walking, romance, and culinary/wine experience. The country also trailed just behind France as best for art and culture, with France rated as the second-best destination for a romantic vacation.
London placed first for entertainment, with New York and Rio de Janeiro closely tied for second. However, New York edged out both Hong Kong and Italy as the world's best shopping destination.
Winning destinations were based on informal rankings by more than 50 top companies arranging vacation experiences, tours, and packages worldwide.
USTOA 2010 Rankings for Top Destination:
Adventure, Soft Adventure:
Italy – cited by nearly 55% of respondents
Spain – chosen by about 30%
Art & Culture:
France – named by more than 50%
Italy – selected by 40%
Rio de Janiero
Italy – cited by 50%
France – picked by more than 40%
New York City – cited by 33% of respondents
Hong Kong – chosen by nearly 30%
Italy – selected by 25%
U.S. Western National Parks
Wine, Dining, & Culinary Experience:
Italy – named by 45%
France – cited by 20%
Spain – picked by 13%
Napa Valley – cited by 12%