By Victoria Kalbraier
Friday, December 28, 2012
THE rolling hills of the Yorkshire Dales, Devon’s beautiful beaches, the royal residence of Windsor… and Ipswich!
As 2012 draws to a close, Ipswich has been named as one of the top ten British towns to experience the largest increase in interest from travellers browsing online.
According to holiday planning site TripAdvisor, Suffolk’s county town has been attracting the interest of travellers seeking inspiration for the perfect staycation.
Between January 1 and October 31, Ipswich saw an increase in traffic of 160 per cent on the site compared to last year – placing it at number nine in the top ten of UK towns with the biggest increase in traveller interest.
TripAdvisor describes the town as “the gateway to Suffolk,” and highlights Ipswich’s “beautiful waterfront where visitors can stroll along the quayside”.
It continues: “Its traffic-free town centre also makes it the ideal place for a walk around the town.”
The website also puts the surge in interest in Ipswich down to some of the town’s neighbouring attractions.
“Close by is the heritage coast and its old fishing towns and villages as well as Jimmy’s Farm, home of Jimmy Doherty, TV farmer and pal of Jamie Oliver.”
Despite all the excitement of the summer, with the Olympics and Diamond Jubilee celebrations, London didn’t make the cut, with an increase in interest of just 116pc.
1. Leyburn, Yorkshire
2. Christchurch, Dorset
3. Skegness, Lincolnshire
4. Bognor Regis, West Sussex
5. New Milton, Hampshire
6. Huddersfield, Yorkshire
7. Woolacombe, Devon
8. Windsor, Berkshire
9. Ipswich, Suffolk
10. Poole, Dorset
TripAdvisor’s top rated hotels include Milsoms Kesgrave Hall, the Salthouse Harbour Hotel and Hintlesham Hall.
And it’s recommended attractions include the New Wolsey Theatre, Christchurch Park and Dance East on the Waterfront.
The location topping the list for increased interest is the picturesque town of Leyburn in North Yorkshire, which has seen a surge in popularity since it featured in the ITV show, The Dales. Presented by Adrian Edmondson, the show follows residents of the Dales and is set for a third series in 2013.
TripAdvisor spokesperson Emma Shaw said: “With staycations still popular, we wanted to find out which UK towns have captured the attention of British travellers this year.
“With Ipswich experiencing such a significant increase in interest on TripAdvisor, it can hopefully look forward to a bumper 2013 for tourism.”
Would you recommend Ipswich as a place to visit? Write to Your Letters, Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org