It's coming of age for India on the world tourist map. Overseas holidayers have put India in the Top Five list of most attractive and satisfying holiday destinations in the world, ahead of developed and traditional hotspots like US, France, Singapore and South Africa.
According to the latest Conde Nast Readers' Travel Awards survey, East was the flavour of the season among overseas holidayers, with Italy being the only country from the Western world to make it to the Top Five.
"New Zealand was voted the favourite holiday destination, followed by Thailand, Australia, Italy and India. The countries were ranked on an index of satisfaction with travel facilities and services - from hotels and spas to airlines and airports."
India scored mainly on account of its hospitality facilities - which included quality spas and hotels - while New Zealand got top marks for scenery, environmental friendliness and safety, ensuring its place at number one. While Italy and France maintained their reputation for excellent food, US' variety of attractions were a big hit among travellers. But holidayers voted Sri Lanka as the 'best value for money' destination.
"India has now become far more accessible than it was two years back. The growing air links, government focus on boosting tourism and a surge in the numberof quality hospitality properties have helped make a trip to India very satisfying for most holidayers."