New Zealand has topped the Telegraph Travel awards for the second year in a row:
Is there any surprise that New Zealand has topped this category for another year? The Land of the Long White Cloud casts its spell over many people in many places, but seems to exert a special hold over British travellers with its mix of old-fashioned Englishness, stunning alpine scenery, vibrant Polynesian culture and obsession with extreme sport. The fact that it also produces some of the world’s best sauvignon blanc and pinot noir adds to its charm, while the quality (and freshness) of Kiwi cuisine continues to impress.
Apart from its sheer physical beauty, New Zealand is also a very compact country, which is fully geared to the needs of time-poor visitors, whether you’re enjoying a family campervan trip or staying at a top-notch country lodge. The roads are well maintained and largely free of traffic and there’s a modern air-transport system for those who want to pack even more into their travel itinerary. But the country’s single biggest tourism asset is surely its people, who are friendly, relaxed and a little eccentric. Passionate travellers themselves, New Zealanders are the world’s most natural hosts. No wonder so many Brits regard this plucky, outdoorsy and rugby-loving nation as their second home.
The story doesn’t say how it was chosen and it doesn’t reflect the number of visitors actually wanting to come.
But given you can’t get any further away from the UK and the strength of our dollar against the pound makes it more expensive than it has been for travellers from there, this is a welcome boost for our reputation as a tourist destination.