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Monday, 15 August 2011

Off-limit Destinations Turning Into Holiday Hotspots

Rwanda sees phenomenal 656% increase in British traveller interest year on year

TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site, can exclusively reveal rapidly growing traveller interest in previously off-limit destinations.  In the last year, Rwanda has seen more growth in searches on TripAdvisor.co.uk than any other country, with an astounding 656% increase.

This growth doesn’t stop with Rwanda.  Many of the biggest search increases* on TripAdvisor in the last year belong to destinations which were previously considered off-limits. 

“As Brits look for their next great travel experience, it seems destinations that only a few years ago would never have been an option are now being considered,” commented Emma O’Boyle, TripAdvisor spokesperson. “We’re seeing rapidly growing interest in destinations like Rwanda and the Republic of Macedonia, showing that British travellers may be becoming more intrepid and looking for something different than the traditional beach holiday.”

“As with any travel plans, it’s important to check the FCO website for the latest travel advice so you can plan accordingly for the safest trip possible.”

Destinations with extensive growth in the last year:

Rwanda – 656% increase in searches from last year
The country’s tragic history kept it out of the tourism spotlight until very recently. In the last year, Rwanda has seen more growth than any other country on TripAdvisor as it plants itself firmly on the to-do list of adventurous British travellers.

Rwanda is particularly making a name for itself amongst outdoor travellers with its lush, rolling green hills and gorilla trekking and tours. The FCO still warns against travel to certain areas of Rwanda, but much of the country is now open to tourism. 

As one TripAdvisor traveller said, “Rwanda is amazing”.   For information on advice on travelling to Rwanda, visit http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Tourism-g293828-Rwanda-Vacations.html

Republic of Macedonia – 48% increase in searches from last year
The Republic of Macedonia’s recent history has seen conflicts, keeping it off the tourist trail for part of the last decade. 

Ohrid, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the southwestern part of the country and on the eastern part of Lake Ohrid, is particularly popular with tourists. The FCO still warns against visiting certain parts of the country, but confirms most visits to the country are “trouble-free”. 

As one TripAdvisor traveller said, “Macedonia is wonderful”. For more information on travelling to the Republic of Macedonai, visit http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Tourism-g295109-Republic_of_Macedonia-Vacations.html

Bosnia and Herzegovina – 39% increase in searches from last year
Although Bosnia has been open to tourism for longer than other destinations in the list, it was off-limits for much of the nineties during the Bosnian War.  The country now has a solid tourism industry which sees continual growth.

Sarajevo, the capital city and home to the 1984 Olympics, is now popular with tourists and the country is becoming increasingly known for affordable ski holidays. Despite some recent deomstartions, the FCO says most visits to the country are “trouble-free”. 

As one TripAdvisor traveller said, “I can honestly say that Bosnia is now one of my favourite countries (having been to over 40) and would go back any time.”.  For information on travelling to Bosnia, visit http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Tourism-g294449-Bosnia_and_Herzegovina-Vacations.html

El Salvador – 28% increase in searches from last year
El Salvador’s civil war in the eighties and nineties, as well as its high crime rate, have kept the country off the beaten path for many tourists.  With the civil war well over and much of the crime considered isolated, more travellers are now showing interest in El Salvador.

Located between Guatamala and Honduras in central America, El Salvador’s Pacific coastline offers beautiful beaches and good surf spots.  The FCO warns against high crime rates in El Salvador, but says most visits to the country are “trouble-free”

As one TripAdvisor traveller said, “El Salvador is beautiful”.  For more information on travelling to El Salvador, visit http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Tourism-g294475-El_Salvador-Vacations.html

All FCO information included above is based on information available on 5th August 2011 and may change at any time

*Figures identify year-on-year increase in search figures (comparing 1 August 2009-31 July 2010 against 1 August 2010-31 July 2011)