CEBU was ranked the 25th Best Destination in Asia by TripAdvisor Inc., the only destination in the Philippines included on the list.
The top 10 best destinations were Bali (Indonesia), Phuket (Thailand), Siem Reap (Cambodia), Hanoi (Vietnam), Tokyo (Japan), Kathmandu (Nepal), Jaipur (India), Hong Kong (China), Seoul (South Korea), and Goa (India).
Completing the list were Bangkok (Thailand), Hoi An (Vietnam), Kyoto (Japan), Chiang Mai (Thailand), New Delhi (India), Beijing (China), Da Nang (Vietnam), Krabi Town (Thailand), Singapore, Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), Shanghai (China), Taipei (Taiwan), Lombok (West Nusa Tenggar), and Osaka (Japan).
TripAdvisor is an American travel and restaurant website that shows hotel and restaurant reviews, accommodation bookings and other travel-related content. It also includes interactive travel forums.
Department of Tourism (DOT) 7 Shahlimar Tamano said he isn’t surprised that Cebu is included on the list, saying the “Queen City of the South” deserves the spot.
He believes Cebu can still move up in the ranking in the coming years, as the province continues to offer diverse offerings and new tourism products. He added that the recognition also reflects Cebu’s prominence in the global tourism industry.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Puyat noted Cebu’s high occupancy last year due to the rehabilitation of Boracay Island.
She said Cebu played an important role in boosting arrivals in the country, even at the height of the six-month closure of the Boracay.
“You helped save the tourism arrivals,” Puyat told Cebuano tourism stakeholders.
To make progress in the ranking, the DOT 7 chief vowed to push for the improvement of transportation within the province and the region to provide easy and hassle-free access of guests to the different tourism attractions.
DOT 7 also initiated the creation of a sports tourism council to position Central Visayas as the sports tourism capital in the country.
Tamano said this is a new tourism product that the DOT and industry stakeholders like tour operators and hotels can sell in the local and international market.