Great Barrier Reef Among World’s Best Places to Visit in 2016
The Great Barrier Reef has been named the best vacation destination in the world in a newly released ranking published by US News & World Report. The UNESCO World Heritage Site stretches for more than 1,200 miles along the coastline of Queensland and is visible from space. Rounding out the top three spots are Paris and Bora Bora in French Polynesia.
The Great Barrier Reef is home to the world’s most extensive coral reef ecosystem, with 400 types of coral, 1,500 species of fish, and 4,000 types of mollusk, covering an area of more than 134,000 square miles. Every year, it’s estimated that 1.9 million people visit the area. But with the devastating effects of climate change and rising water temperatures continuing to place increased pressure on one of the earth’s most extraordinary ecosystems, scientists warn that our time with the natural wonder is running out. In April, the Australian Research Council warned that 500 coral reefs from Cairns to Papua New Guinea experienced the worst mass bleaching on record.
Meanwhile, despite the spate of terror attacks and labor strikes to beset Paris, the City of Light has managed to slip into second place for the best vacation destination of 2016. Currently, the French capital is hosting the UEFA Euro soccer games.
The ranking weighs editors’ and voters’ choices equally. Below are the results of the US News & World Report’s World’s Best Places to Visit 2016. –Relaxnews
Best Places to Visit in the World
1. Great Barrier Reef, Australia
3. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Best Places to Visit in the USA
1. Grand Canyon National Park
2. Maui, Hawaii
3. Yellowstone National Park
Best Places to Visit in the Caribbean
1. British Virgin Islands
2. St. Lucia
3. U.S. Virgin Islands
Best Places to Visit in Canada
1. Vancouver, British Columbia
3. Banff, Alberta
Our Favorite Products Right Now
See the world from your inbox.
Sign up for The Journey, our Travel newsletter.