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The winner of the coveted title of European Best Destination 2022, as chosen by travellers from all over the world, who cast their votes in the 13th edition of the European Best Destinations competition between 20 January and 10 February this year, is Ljubljana. The fact that 92% of all the votes came from other countries is proof of the international attractiveness of Slovenia’s capital city. With this victory, Ljubljana also sets a unique record in the history of the competition: no winning destination has obtained such a large share of the votes from outside its own borders since the competition began in 2009. But it isn’t only travellers who are attracted to Ljubljana: As the European Best Destinations website notes, whole delegations of mayors, environmental advisers and town planners visit Ljubljana to understand the green miracle of this unique capital in Europe.

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© Marko Delbello Ocepek

On 20 January this year, European Best Destinations, which plays an important role in the promotion of culture and tourism in Europe both to travellers and to the tourism industry and media, asked the following question on its website and to its followers on social media: Where in Europe would you like to go on holiday in 2022? Travellers could vote for a choice of 20 destinations selected by a special jury on the basis of past successes, cultural and tourism offerings, quality of life and sustainable development. Over the course of 21 days, 528,069 votes were submitted from 182 countries, with 56% coming from Europe and 44% from other countries. The latter represents the highest percentage of votes from outside Europe since the competition began and is a clear indication of travellers’ desire to return to “the old continent”. Ljubljana received 75,642 votes, with the largest numbers coming from the United States of America, Italy, Germany, Austria and Croatia.

European Best Destinations, which held the 13th edition of the European Best Destinations competition in conjunction with EDEN, Europe’s largest network of sustainable tourism destinations, highlights Ljubljana as the top destination to visit in 2022 on its website (the most visited website dedicated to tourism in Europe, reaching more than six million travellers) at: https://www.europeanbestdestinations.com/european-best-destinations-2022/, Among other things they say that “the city is a treasure trove of exciting secrets and natural joys. The proud green capital of Slovenia invites all vagabonds who are hungry for culture, art, entertainment, and large green areas, which provide a relaxed atmosphere. But it’s not just travellers from all over the world who visit Ljubljana. Whole delegations of mayors, environmental advisers and town planners visit Ljubljana to understand the green miracle of this unique capital in Europe. Earlier than other European destinations, Ljubljana opted for a pedestrianised historic centre.”

Prestigious media such as Condé Nast, Forbes USA, National Geographic, Lonely Planet and Business Insider, among others, will be publishing a range of pieces on the destination. The annual selection of the best destination in Europe always attracts a lot of interest from various media – mainly in Europe but also further afield.
“We are proud that Ljubljana is the choice of global travellers and that they have placed it at the very top of their lists of travel destinations. It is particularly noteworthy that 92% of the votes come from other countries, which is a unique tribute to our city and our efforts to develop it in the directions of sustainability, soft mobility, high quality of life, a diverse offering based on local specialities and ingredients and the inclusion of the local population,” says Ljubljana Tourism director Petra Stušek.

“This year, more than ever before, several prestigious destinations were in the fight for first place, but in the end it was travellers from all over the world who had the last word: Ljubljana is the European Best Destination 2022. Thanks to your work over the last 15 years, Ljubljana is a tolerant, multicultural, open, optimistic, sporty and family-friendly destination,” commented European Best Destinations director Maximilien Lejeune. “It is a safe city with one of the highest qualities of life in Europe. A city that can boast the title of Best Green Capital in Europe and has the highest percentage of green space per inhabitant of any European capital city. A city of good practices that inspires destinations across the world. Above all, however, Ljubljana is a city created for and with its citizens, a place where it is good to live, work, invest and settle with one’s family, one’s project, one’s start-up.”

European Best Destinations is a travel website developed for the purpose of promoting culture and tourism in Europe. In conjunction with tourism organisations and EDEN, Europe’s biggest network of sustainable tourism destinations, established by the European Commission, it encourages better understanding of the richness, diversity and quality of European destinations. Its competitions for the best European destinations of the year, best Christmas markets, best beaches, best ski resorts and most romantic destinations have become the most important tourism competitions in Europe. They bring together millions of travellers who support and discover the most beautiful destinations in Europe.

In 2020 European Best Destinations included Ljubljana among the safest Christmas destinations in Europe, while in 2021 it proclaimed it the Best Green Capital in Europe.

The European Best Destinations competition plays an important role in the promotion of Europe as the number one destination in the world. It has become a meeting place for tourism organisations and travellers from all over the world and the main gateway to discovering Europe.