(This was recently posted on the Escape.com blog post)
It’s arguably Australia’s most recognisable feature, so it stands to reason that the Sydney Opera House is our favourite landmark.
Travel review site TripAdvisor named the Opera House as the 2017 winner of its Travellers’ Choice Landmarks of Australia awards.
Regarded as one of the great architectural achievements of the 20th century, the Opera House attracts over 8 million visitors a year, and hosts more than 2000 performances.
In second place, was the Sydney Harbour Bridge — otherwise known as the “coat hanger”.
The world’s tallest steel arch bridge, the structure’s highest point is a vertigo-inducing 134-metres above the water. As well as being a famous Sydney icon, the bridge plays an integral part in the city’s transport infrastructure carrying 200,000 vehicles a day from the north shore to the CBD and back.
Last year’s winner, the Australian War Memorial, came in third in 2017 — as a place to commemorate, interpret and understand the experience of war and its lasting impact on Australian society.
Also making the top five, were Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance, and Sydney’s Queen Victoria Building (QVB) featuring an original 19th century staircase.
Other landmarks to score a spot on the list, were Melbourne’s Block Arcade, the Port Arthur Historic site in Tasmania and Fremantle Prison in Western Australia.
Parliament House in Canberra and the Byron Bay lighthouse completed the top ten, devised by an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of each landmark’s reviews worldwide.
Australian landmarks failed to crack the global top ten, which was topped by Angkor Wat temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
The breathtaking Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi came in second, and Mezquita Cathedral de Cordoba in Spain third.
St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Italy was fourth and the Taj Mahal in India wrapped up the top five favourite landmarks throughout the world.
TripAdvisor Director of Communications for the Asia Pacific, Janice Lee Fang said the awards honoured 706 landmarks in 82 countries.
“The Travellers’ Choice Landmarks highlight some of Australia’s most loved attractions that have been highly recommended by the TripAdvisor community all over the world,” said Ms Lee Fang.
The list includes historically, architecturally or culturally significant attractions that are typically owned or run by a government or non-profit organisation.
TOP 10 LANDMARKS IN AUSTRALIA
1. Sydney Opera House — Sydney
2. Sydney Harbour Bridge — Sydney
3. Australian War Memorial — Australian Capital Territory
4. Shrine of Remembrance — Melbourne
5. Queen Victoria Building (QVB) — Sydney
6. Block Arcade — Melbourne
7. Port Arthur Historic Site — Port Arthur
8. Fremantle Prison — Fremantle
9. Australian Parliament House — Canberra
10. Cape Byron Lighthouse — Byron Bay
TOP 10 LANDMARKS IN THE WORLD
1. Angkor Wat — Siem Reap, Cambodia
2. Sheikh Zayed Mosque — Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
3. Mezquita Cathedral de Cordoba — Cordoba, Spain
4. St. Peter’s Basilica — Vatican City, Italy
5. Taj Mahal — Agra, India
6. Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood — St. Petersburg, Russia
7. Great Wall at Mutianyu — Beijing, China
8. Machu Picchu — Machu Picchu, Peru
9. Plaza de Espana — Seville, Spain
10. Duomo di Milano — Milan, Italy