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Travelers' choice: World's top 25 destinations

Story highlights

  • TripAdvisor's Travelers' Choice awards highlight 25 top global destinations
  • The annual rankings are based on the quality and quantity of TripAdvisor user reviews
  • Lists also include top destinations in the United States, Africa, South America

You blinked and a quarter of the year flew by. It's time to plan a vacation.

TripAdvisor's sixth annual Travelers' Choice awards has sliced and diced its users' reviews and ratings over 12 months into lists of its most highly recommended global and regional destinations. TripAdvisor announced its winning destinations Tuesday.

Istanbul tops the travel review site's list of best spots in the world this year.

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"I think what really appeals to people about Istanbul is this great combination of wonderful culture and amazingly beautiful architecture there and great shopping. And if you're a U.S. traveler, the exchange rate is pretty good," said Brooke Ferencsik, director of communications at TripAdvisor.

Rome and London rank second and third on the global list.

This year's top 25 list of global spots has Asian destinations climbing in the rankings. Six of this year's top 25 global destinations are in Asia, with several Asian cities climbing 10 or more spots from their rankings last year. See the top 25 destinations in the world in the gallery above.

Travelers' Choice award-winning destinations are determined using an algorithm that takes into account the quality and quantity of reviews from TripAdvisor users. In addition to the top spots globally, there are also lists for a selection of countries, continents and regions.

In the United States, the South makes a strong showing in 2014, with Austin, Texas; Atlanta, Georgia; and Nashville, Tennessee, breaking into the top 25 this year.

Here are the top cities from the Travelers' Choice U.S. list (see the top global destinations in the gallery):

1. New York, New York
2. Chicago, Illinois
3. San Francisco, California
4. Las Vegas, Nevada
5. New Orleans, Louisiana
6. Los Angeles, California
7. San Diego, California
8. Seattle, Washington
9. Washington, D.C.
10. Orlando, Florida
11. Honolulu, Hawaii
12. Houston, Texas
13. Charleston, South Carolina
14. Boston, Massachusetts
15. Portland, Oregon
16. San Antonio, Texas
17. Palm Springs, California
18. Austin, Texas
19. Branson, Missouri
20. Atlanta, Georgia
21. Phoenix, Arizona
22. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
23. Saint Louis, Missouri
24. Nashville, Tennessee
25. Miami Beach, Florida

MORE: 5 ways to decode a TripAdvisor review