In the same TripAdvisor poll Auckland central was rated the second best destination in New Zealand.
The annual awards – from the world’s number one travel review website – honour top travel places worldwide, based on millions of reviews and opinions from TripAdvisor travelers.
Waiheke Island – described as a haven of beautiful beaches, gastronomical treasures and small wineries – features alongside a range of stand-out Pacific Island destinations, including Bora Bora and Taveuni Island in Fiji.
Auckland was also the only destination in New Zealand to have three beaches in the top 10 list, with Piha ranked number three and neighbouring west coast beaches Bethells and Karekare also placing in the top 10.
ATEED Manager Tourism Jason Hill says that collectively these awards are outstanding recognition that help confirm the shift in perception about Auckland.
“TripAdvisor is well recognised as the go-to travel website for independent reviews, so it’s a reliable reflection of what visitors actually think. It’s great to see Waiheke Island, Auckland city and our beaches all receiving high praise.
“These accolades reinforce the transformation that Auckland is going through and cements our reputation as a destination in our own right,” says Mr Hill.
The awards cap off an outstanding summer of visitation for Auckland, with guest nights up 5.5 per cent from October 2012 to March 2013. Visitors are also staying longer in Auckland, with the average length of stay up from 2.02 to 2.08 nights.
The TripAdvisor recongnition follows several other accolades in the last six months, with Waiheke Island being listed in the New York Times 46 Places to Go this year and Auckland being named Australasia’s top destination in the 2012 World Travel Awards.
Auckland was also ranked third in the world on the 2013 Mercer Scale of Global Lifestyle Cities and named Best Turnaround Destination by Britain’s Cruise Insight magazine.
These accolades and Auckland’s strong summer visitation figures will help to support ATEED’s work to grow the overall visitor economy in line with the targets in its 10-year Auckland Visitor Plan.