Past Media Releases

Great Barrier Reef ranks first as world’s best place to visit

29 June 2016

The world’s largest coral reef system and Australia’s greatest natural wonder has ranked No. 1 in U.S. News & World Report’s World’s Best Places to Visit rankings for 2016-17.

Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef is a favourite amongst travellers, leading all world destinations ahead of Paris in second and French Polynesia’s Bora Bora in third.

The rankings are based on expert opinion, user votes and current trends.

Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ) CEO, Leanne Coddington, said the Reef’s status as number one was a vote of confidence in its world-wide tourism appeal.

“The Great Barrier Reef is a living treasure and a major tourism drawcard for visitors to Queensland,” Ms Coddington said.

“It is an unrivalled experience that tens of thousands of people are enjoying every day.”

Ms Coddington said tourism to the Reef contributed almost $5.2 billion to the nation’s economy.

“The Great Barrier Reef welcomes more than 1.9 million visitors each year,” Ms Coddington said. 

“It’s ours to protect and share, and this latest result reaffirms just how important the Reef is to Queensland’s tourism economy.

“Experiences like the Great Barrier Reef help inspire visitors to experience Queensland, the best address on earth.”      

U.S. News & World Report is a leading provider of service news and information, with a signature Best of series of consumer guides across a range of different categories.

For more information on the World’s Best Places to Visit rankings, view U.S. News & World Report’s website.