New Zealand in Lonely Planet's top lists

Last updated 14:19 29/10/2013
SEAN WILLIS/Fairfax NZ

Len Brown announces that Lonely Planet has named Auckland as one of the Top 10 cities in the world to visit.

Auckland
TOP CITY: Auckland has been named one of the top 10 cities in the word to visit by Lonely Planet.

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Auckland, the West Coast and Queenstown have been ranked as some of the top places in the world to visit.

Auckland is rated as one of the top 10 cities in the world to visit next year.

It made the list in 10th spot in Lonely Planet's Best in Travel 2014, published today.

It followed Christchurch being listed at No 6 in the publication's 2013 list.

Auckland sits alongside cities such as Paris, Zurich, Shanghai and Vancouver in the ninth annual guide, which highlights the trendiest destinations, journeys and experiences for next year.

Auckland is recognised for its cuisine, culture and coastal scenery, with Lonely Planet saying: "Food, arts and exploring the coastal hinterland are all excellent reasons to extend your stay in New Zealand's biggest and most cosmopolitan city."

Mayor Len Brown said the accolade from the world's top independent guidebook was deserved.

"It shows Auckland is becoming known the world over as a destination in its own right, an exciting international city in a stunning natural setting, and an unmissable South Pacific urban experience," he said.

"The work we are doing to make Auckland a fabulous place to live and visit is paying off and putting Auckland on the map."

The guide mentions the waterfront area and Britomart, as well as the west coast beaches and Waiheke Island.

The West Coast was ranked as the eighth best region to visit, with the "mesmerising" mirror lake of Matheson a "hidden jewel".

"Those who think they've seen it all should prepare for some enlivening surprises," Lonely Planet said.

Queenstown made the list of best honeymoon locations for 2014.

"Adrenaline is as important for bonding as the love drug oxytocin and there's no better place to get it pumping than New Zealand's South Island," the guide said.

"If all the activity becomes too much, there are helicopter rides over the Southern Alps to stunning Milford Sound, as well as a sophisticated food and wine scene."

The top 10 cities were nominated by more than 500 Lonely Planet authors and staff and selected based on topicality, excitement and "special X-factor".

Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development is aiming to double the contribution from the visitor economy, boosting it to $6 billion by 2021.

The top 10 cities, in order, are: Paris, Trinidad (Cuba), Cape Town, Riga (Latvia), Zurich, Shanghai, Vancouver, Chicago, Adelaide and Auckland.

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- Fairfax Media

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