KYIV, Ukraine - Globe Spots, National Geographic, Trip Advisor and The Lonely Planet ratings have named Ukraine among Top 10 destinations for 2013.
The country's touristic prospects changed from being an outsider to a "must-see" destination after hosting Europe's major sporting event - EURO 2012 football championship.
Ukraine as a whole as well as its capital Kyiv, Crimean Peninsula, Lviv, Chornobyl site and even Salt Tunnels of Solotvyno appeared in prestigious international travel ratings.
Thus, Southern Ukrainian Crimea opens the 2013 list of the 20 Must-See Places, picked by the National Geographic Traveler editors. "The Crimean Peninsula, with its voluptuously curved Black Sea coast of sparkling cliffs, is paradise - with Riviera-grade vistas but without Riviera prices," describes the popular tourist magazine the Ukrainian gem.
Moreover, known travel website TripAdvisor announced its Travelers' Choice 2012, naming Ukrainian Kyiv the top destination on the rise among the cities of The Old World. Ukrainian capital placed third in the world's top ten rating. "Having survived the Mongol Empire, WWII, Chornobyl, and Soviet rule, Kyiv is the proud capital of the Ukraine," describes the city TripAdvisor.
The Globe Spots featured Ukraine in their Top Countries to Visit in 2013 list. Ukraine took the eighth spot in the Top Ten. "Ukraine provides a surreal combination of rock-till-you-drop coastal party towns to Crimean holiday resorts to cosmopolitan capitals to villages you'd swear you were still in the USSR," reads globespots.com.
World's most successful travel publisher The Lonely Planet mentioned Ukraine on three occasions. Firstly, Lviv, home to a number of UNESCO World Heritage sites, became number two entry in the 6 Weekend Breaks in Europe list. Chornobyl Reactor #4 - the site of the world's biggest nuclear disaster in 1986 - was named eighth among the Spookiest Buildings Around the World while Salt Tunnels of Solotvyno became tenth World's Saltiest Sights.
Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of UNWTO, stated that Ukraine had to promote its tourist potential, letting the world discover "your mystery - the great city of Kyiv, a wonderful country". Ukraine's growing popularity is also due to the advancement of tourists' urge for independent traveling and, hence, authentic and unique experience, added Rifai.