One Australian tourist destination was named in Lonely Planet’s annual top 10 cities list for 2016, but it wasn’t Melbourne or Sydney.
Fremantle has been named as Australia’s top destination for 2016, with highly-regarded travel guide Lonely Planet placing it seventh in its annual Best in Travel – top 10 cities list.
The port city was the only location in Australia to be named on the list, which featured Rome, Nashville and Manchester, among others, as must-visit destinations.
The top location on the list was Montenegro’s Kotor, followed by Quito in Ecuador and Dublin, Ireland, which ranked third.
Only one other Southern Hemisphere location, Malaysia’s historic George Town, was named in the top 10.
Lonely Planet’s review lauded Fremantle’s live music and craft beer scenes, as well as its boutique hotels, buskers and beaches.
Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said he considered the accolade to be a huge boost for Fremantle.
“Being selected as a top 10 city by Lonely Planet is a huge honour and reflects not only the physical transformation of the city in recent years but also the growing buzz and optimism here,” he said.
“It’s a fairly safe bet that the quirky charm and allure of Fremantle is about to infect the hearts and minds of a whole new global audience, just as it has infected locals and visitors here for the best part of two centuries.”
Mr Pettitt said he expected hospitality and retail businesses to benefit most from the listing.
“There’ve been a number of new hotels, restaurants and bars coming online in recent years that have really added to the appeal of Fremantle,” he said.
“I’m sure these and the many other exciting projects in the pipeline have contributing to Lonely Planet selecting Freo in this list.”
“The last time Fremantle got this sort of worldwide exposure was during the America’s Cup in the 1980s so we know what to expect and are really looking forward to being in the world spotlight again.”