According to the Nation Brand Index (NBI) survey of 20,000 adults worldwide, the UK was named the fifth most desirable tourist destination, a result VisitBritain chief executive Sandie Dawe said is a “testament to the enduring appeal of Britain.”
The UK was also placed fourth out of 50 countries for being “rich in historic buildings and monuments” and for having a “vibrant city life and urban attractions”.
“It is clear that we are retaining our appeal in an increasingly competitive world market,” said Dawe. “With more governments recognising tourism as a driver of growth and ramping up their international marketing it is striking that our ratings are remaining steady.”
Disappointing hospitality scores
However when it came to hospitality, Britain once again placed joint 13th, and the eighth most desirable location to visit if “money were no object”.
“We cannot rest on our laurels,” Dawes added. “We still need to work hard on our ‘welcome’ ranking ahead of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. But at the same time there is a great opportunity for us to introduce the world to the many surprises and delights that exploring more of Britain’s natural beauty can offer.”
The majority of those surveyed in the report had not visited the UK, meaning the list is based on perceptions and not experience.
It is thought the election of President Barack Obama last year has helped the USA retain its number one spot, while several changes have occurred in the top ten overall.
The ten most admired countries in the world, are: