Vietnam’s growing popularity as a travel destination has been confirmed by its ranking as one of the 10 best places to visit in the world.
The ranking, released by the world’s most popular travel guide and review website, TripAdvisor, last month, is based on readers’ reviews and ratings for various categories including accommodation, restaurants and travel experiences, gathered over 12 months.
Iceland tops the latest the list, followed by Greece, Mexico, Portugal and Morocco. Vietnam, which was named among world’s 20 fastest growing travel destinations in 2016, has overtaken its neighbor Thailand for the first time. Thailand came in 9th, three places behind Vietnam.
Foreign tourist arrivals to Vietnam in January-May skyrocketed 27.6 percent from a year ago to more than 6.71, according to the General Statistics Office.
Vietnam is loved by both local and foreign visitors for its natural beauty, cheap prices, vibrant nightlife and memorable travel experiences.
In April, TripAdvisor’s readers also voted An Bang Beach in the central ancient town Hoi An as one of the 25 most picturesque beaches in Asia, for the third year in a row.
Vietnam’s travel experiences have received high recommendations from various global sites. In late 2016, the U.S. news site Business Insider named a cruise trip through Ha Long Bay among the must-do travel experiences in Asia.
Ho Chi Minh City was voted the PLACE to go for nightlife in Southeast Asia by Rough Guides, the respected U.K. travel magazine, in April.
The Telegraph also recommended Hanoi for an amazing food experience, while Ho Chi Minh City has cracked various lists of top destinations for solo and retiree travelers. Both cities were named by Price of Travel as one of the cheapest cities for backpackers.
Vietnam is striving to welcome 17-20 million foreign visitors and make $35 billion per year from tourism by 2020, contributing 10 percent to the country’s economy, compared to the current 7.5 percent.