New Zealand Named in the Top Five Most Welcoming Places on Earth

Finally, it has now been confirmed to the world what Kiwis have known and taken pride in for so long, that we’re one of the most welcoming countries on earth.

Bestowing the award is, one of the world’s leading digital travel platforms, which released the news as part of its annual guest review awards.

The awards honour accommodation partners that consistently deliver great guest experiences and high quality accommodation. Now in their seventh year, 759,845 properties received awards across 219 countries. delved into its data of more than 171million genuine guest reviews to uncover for the first time the most welcoming places on Earth to unveil a top five of Austria, Czech Republic, Poland, New Zealand and Taiwan.

“I may be a little biased but I think it’s absolutely fantastic for New Zealand to be recognised in this way. It’s a testament to the hard work of our tourism sector and the quality of the accommodation on offer. Thanks to our genuine guest reviews, winning an award is a clear statement of quality that travellers can trust” says Local Area Manager Joshua Nu’u-Steele.

“We may not have come top, but it’s not in our nature to brag so I’m more than delighted to settle for fourth.”

By further mining the review data, was able to single out Lake Tekapo as one of the top ten most welcoming places on the planet. The small Mackenzie District town came fifth in the global list which was topped by Goreme in Turkey.

For the two-thirds of Kiwi travellers that say friendly and interesting locals are one of their top considerations when selecting a destination for their next trip, a staycation might be on the cards for the next getaway.

Graham Smith, Mayor of MacKenzie District which includes Lake Tekapo, said the it was great to be recognised in this way although it wasn’t necessarily a surprise.

“As a community we’ve worked hard with our approach of quality service and pride ourselves on our wonderful and welcoming reputation. It is something so fitting with our special and unique Mackenzie District” Graham says.

“To be recognised in this way, to realise your efforts are not just noticed locally but globally, that’s pretty special and something we’re all incredibly proud of. I congratulate our Tekapo businesses and community.”

Being one of the top five most welcoming countries isn’t the only thing we should be celebrating. Over 5,100 New Zealand properties were awarded with Guest Review Awards for consistently achieving an 8.5/10 score or higher, proving that top quality accommodation in New Zealand is not hard to find.

Winning properties were spread out throughout the country, from Bluff up to Cape Reinga, with the vast majority, 84%, being Bed and Breakfasts.

In a reflection of how the Kiwi offer remains distinctly different to what’s offered elsewhere, apartments were the most awarded properties globally with Bed and Breakfasts coming forth.

“No matter the type, size or location of the property, what we see from our customers is that they value a human connection when they travel, whether it’s some extra attention to detail or a truly individualized approach to service,” said Olivier Grémillon, Vice President at

“With these awards, we celebrate and thank all of the amazing accommodation providers who create special travel experiences for our customers on a daily basis.”


Northfield Luxury Accommodation


Bed & Breakfast

Kapiti Waves B&B

Pukerua Bay

Bed & Breakfast

Falcon’s Rise Alpaca Farm


Bed & Breakfast

Castlewood Cottage

Company Bay

Holiday Home

Hopewell Lodge

Kenepuru Sounds


The Winedrinkers Cottage


Holiday Home

Richmond Lodge


Bed & Breakfast

Pohutukawa Lodge



Rosemary Retreat

Broad Bay


Ribbonwood Country House


Guest House

Notes to editors:

To be recognised with an award, properties had to have an average review score of 8.0 or higher based on at least 5 reviews as of 11:59pm (CET) on October 31, 2018. Only customers that have actually stayed at an accommodation can leave a review of their experience on After they have checked out of the property, they are invited to rate their accommodation experience against six categories: cleanliness, comfort, location, facilities, staff and value for money. As these reviews are never edited or adjusted in any way, travellers can reference them for an authentic account of what the real guest experience is like at every place to stay on