Titanic Belfast voted Europe's best tourist attraction
World Travel Awards
Published 05/09/2016 | 10:17
Titanic Belfast has been named ‘Europe’s Leading Tourist Attraction’ at the prestigious World Travel Awards.
The award was presented at a gala ceremony in Sardinia last night.
Titanic Belfast pipped world-famous attractions like The Eiffel Tower, La Sagrada Familia and Buckingham Palace to claim top spot.
“After only four years in operation, to be recognised and beat off stiff competition from Europe’s most iconic landmarks is a true honour," said Tim Husbands MBE, Titanic Belfast's Chief Executive, thanking those who voted in the awards.
Last year, Dublin's Guinness Storehouse was named Europe's best attraction, meaning Ireland now retains the award for two years in a row.
The World Travel Awards, now in their 23rd year, are decided by open vote and widely hailed as 'the Oscars of the travel industry'.
2016 marks the first year a Northern Ireland attraction has won this award.
Titanic Belfast opened in 2012, and last month welcomed its three millionth visitor. Queen Elizabeth, Hillary Clinton and Titanic director James Cameron are among the celebrities to have visited what is now an iconic attraction.
“Titanic Belfast is now a global brand which has put Northern Ireland on the map for all the right reasons so last night’s official confirmation that it is now Europe’s leading tourist attraction is well deserved," added First Minister, Arlene Foster.
Other European winners at the World Travel Awards included Lufthansa (best airline), the Algarve (best beach destination), Ciragen Palace Kempinski Istanbul (best hotel), Madeira (best island destination) and Norwegian (best cruise line).
Saint Petersburg won Europe's Leading Destination for the second year.
Titanic Belfast now goes forward to the Grand Final Gala Ceremony 2016, where it will vie with other regional winners for the title of World's Leading Attraction.
The ceremony takes place in the Maldives on December 12.