Thailand was named the Best Beach Destination 2015 from National Geographic Traveller Russia, and was also voted the Best Beach Resort via an online poll from 240,000 readers, at the awards presentation ceremony held on 18 November, 2015. The event was also aired on Russia’s TV 24 and several other broadcasting channels in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
Ms. Eumporn Jiragalwisul, Director of Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Moscow Office said, “This is such great news. Thailand is very honoured to have received such prestigious awards from one of the top travel magazines in Russia as well as to have been voted online by its readers. Both honours are testaments of Thailand as a top beach getaway destination among travellers from Russia, one of the top 10 tourist markets to Thailand.”
In 2014, Thailand welcomed about 1.6 million visitors from Russia. In 2015, from January – October, a total of 649,188 visitors from Russia have visited Thailand.
Travellers from Russia are attracted to Thailand’s beach resorts including Phuket, Pattaya and Ko Samui. Apart from daily direct flights from Moscow to key gateways in Thailand, several charter flights are available during the winter season from various cities in Russia and the CIS, allowing travellers from this region to experience the nice and warm weather in Thailand. While here, they can enjoy a wide variety of tourist attractions ranging from unique culture, abundant natural beauty and remarkable variety of activities including soft adventure, spa, shopping and medical tourism.
National Geographic Traveller Russia is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Published five times per year, the magazine has a circulation of 110,000 and a total readership of 746,800. It is also available in an iPad-version.
The National Geographic Traveller Award in Russia has been held already for the fifth time. The uniqueness of this award is the method of voting which is held on the website www.nat-geo.ru. This is truly the reader’s choice according to their humble opinion. This prestigious award highlights the main trends and preferences of Russians in the field of tourism and travelling. Their opinion influences on the magazine’s editorial plan for the next year as well.
For the 2015 awards edition, the magazine launched the voting on the website from 29 June to 10 November. Categories and five nominees are set before voting and people chose any they want. In case they cannot find the destination they want to vote for, they can write their own variant in a comment.
This year 240,000 readers participated in the voting for a total of 90 countries, 19 Russian destinations, 39 air companies, 23 hotel chains, 33 online projects, and 10 TV shows about travelling. National Geographic added two more categories – Editorial’s choice within destinations or person.
Thailand was presented as one of the nominees in the category of Beach Leisure, and got the award with 14 per cent. There were 26 competitors, including Spain (12 per cent), Philippines (10 per cent), Azerbaijan (9 per cent), Greece (7 per cent), and Montenegro (6 per cent).