Fascinating map reveals the 16 most in-demand tourist attractions in the world, with a fairytale castle in Germany and the Harry Potter studio tour trumping Walt Disney World
- Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, The Making of Harry Potter is the UK’s most in-demand attraction
- The Statue of Liberty is the other major American attraction that makes the ranking
- READ MORE: The world’s most expensive cities to live in: Zurich and Singapore are the joint priciest in 2023
A fairytale-like castle located in the south of Germany and Machu Picchu in Peru have been named the two most in-demand attractions in the world.
They come top of a ranking of the 16 most in-demand tourist attractions, drawn up by Premier Inn after data was collated from over 100 official online booking systems that revealed how far in advance travellers must book their tickets for top experiences around the world.
The ‘captivating’ Neuschwanstein Castle and the 15th-century Inca citadel must be booked 37 days in advance, according to the British hotel chain.
This graphic shows the world’s most in-demand tourist attractions, according to data collated by Premier Inn
The Harry Potter Studio Tour is the UK’s most desired experience, and comes second globally. While European attractions dominate the ranking – filling 11 slots.
Scroll down to see the list in full – ranked in reverse order.
10= Statue of Liberty, U.S
Standing tall on Liberty Island, this copper statue draws intrigue from tourists all over the globe. But Lonely Planet notes: ‘Visiting the Statue of Liberty is not just a case of turning up on the day.’
The Statue of Liberty, located on Liberty Island in New York, ranks joint 10th on Premier Inn’s list of the world’s most in-demand attractions
Access is by ferry from Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan Island, the website says, and ‘most visitors visit on a loop that also takes in Ellis Island’.
Ranking in joint 10th position, Premier Inn suggests tourists should pre-book tickets three days in advance.
10= The Sistine Chapel, Vatican City
The Sistine Chapel ranks joint 10th on Premier Inn’s list – visitors should book three days in advance. Above is Michelangelo’s famous ceiling fresco
This world-famous artistic treasure is one of the chapels of the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican City, where the pope’s official residence is located.
Its crowning glory is the ceiling, adorned with Michelangelo’s famous fresco, which was painted between 1508 and 1512.
The Sistine Chapel ranks joint 10th on Premier Inn’s list – and visitors should book three days in advance. When purchasing tickets, Museums Rome recommends purchasing skip-the-line tickets for stress-free enjoyment of the masterpiece.
9. Walt Disney World, U.S
In ninth place is Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Premier Inn says visitors should book their tickets at least four days in advance
Perhaps the most famous amusement park in the world, Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, places ninth on Premier Inn’s list of in-demand attractions.
The enormous resort has four main parks: Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot and Hollywood Studios – each one filled with rides and attractions.
Tourists should book their tickets at least four days in advance, according to Premier Inn. To make the most of your time at the theme park, Walt Disney World suggests booking ‘Lightning Lane’ entrances to bypass the queue.
8= Anne Frank House, Amsterdam, Netherlands
In joint eighth on Premier Inn’s ranking is the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, which attracts millions of people per year
Located by the Prinsengracht Canal in central Amsterdam, the Anne Frank House is a must-see attraction for most visitors. Ranking eighth on Premier Inn’s list – tourists should book six days in advance.
Visitors will learn the story of Anne Frank and have the chance to view the original diary, in a museum that attracts millions of people per year.
They’ll see the Secret Annex, where Anne Frank hid for over two years during World War II, its website notes.
8= The Catacombs, Paris, France
The Catacombs, an underground ossuary in Paris, places joint eighth on Premier Inn’s list. If visitors want to see the skull-lined tunnels they should book six days in advance
Beneath the streets of Paris, lies an ossuary holding the remains of more than six million people. Lonely Planet notes: ‘It’s gruesome, ghoulish and downright spooky, but it never fails to captivate visitors.’
The travel guide says the skull-lined tunnels became a resting place for the city’s unburied corpses that could no longer fit in the overcrowded cemeteries in the 18th century – and it’s now one of Paris’s most popular sites.
Ranking eighth on Premier Inn’s list, tourists should pre-book tickets six days in advance.
8= Borghese Gallery, Rome, Italy
In joint eighth place is the Borghese Gallery in Rome, which is surrounded by ‘astonishing’ green gardens
Ranking joint eighth on the list of the world’s most in-demand attractions is the Borghese Gallery in Italy, which its website describes as ‘one of the must-visit places during your trip to Rome’.
The ‘elegant palace’ is home to world-renowned artworks, featuring the likes of Caravaggio, Canova and Raphael.
The gallery attracts thousands of visitors a year and is surrounded by ‘astonishing’ green gardens – to secure tickets, visitors are advised to book six days in advance.
7= Big Ben, UK
Big Ben ranks joint seventh on Premier Inn’s list of most in-demand attractions. Visitors should book their tickets to see the clock eight days in advance
The Elizabeth Tower, known as ‘Big Ben’, is located in Westminster and stands 316 feet (96 metres) tall.
You can visit Big Ben by booking a 90-minute guided tour up 334 stairs to see the clock mechanism room and the Belfry, where the famous bell is located, Visit London says.
Ranking joint seventh on Premier Inn’s list of most in-demand attractions, visitors should book their tickets eight days in advance.
7= The Forbidden City, China
The Forbidden City in China is the joint seventh most in-demand attraction in the world, according to Premier Inn
Lonely Planet says the Unesco-listed Forbidden City ‘is China’s largest and best-preserved collection of ancient buildings’.
Enclosed by 3.5km (2.17 miles) of walls, it notes: ‘This otherworldly palace was the reclusive home to two dynasties of imperial rule, sharing 900-plus buildings with a retinue of eunuchs, servants and concubines until the Republic overthrew the last Qing emperor in 1911.’
Located in the heart of Beijing, it attracts 16million annual visitors, Lonely Planet notes. Placing it in joint sixth on its ranking, Premier Inn says visitors should book just over a week (eight days) in advance.
6= The Van Gogh Museum, Netherlands
The Van Gogh Museum, located in Amsterdam’s museum quarter, places joint sixth
This museum houses the largest Van Gogh collection in the world, featuring masterpieces such as Sunflowers, Almond Blossom, The Bedroom and more.
It holds 200 paintings, 400 drawings and 700 letters by the Post-Impressionist artist. This year, the museum celebrated its 50th anniversary with special art festivals and exhibitions.
Situated in Amsterdam’s museum quarter, it is one of the city’s most popular attractions. Ranking joint sixth on Premier Inn’s list of in-demand attractions, visitors hoping to catch a glimpse of the famed artworks will have to book 10 days in advance.
6= Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan, Italy
The Santa Maria delle Grazie, which houses Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Last Supper, comes joint sixth
There’s plenty to marvel at on the outside of the Santa Maria delle Grazie (‘Holy Mary of Grace’), but inside is where the true treasure lies.
Listed as a Unesco World Heritage site, tourists from all over the globe flock to the convent in Milan to take a glimpse at Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Last Supper, a masterpiece created between 1495 and 1497.
To visit the classic painting, tourists will have to pre-book their tickets at least 10 days in advance.
5. Mount Fuji, Japan
Fancy summiting this world-famous volcano? Climbing slots are limited so pre-booking is crucial
An iconic symbol of Japan, Mount Fuji’s perfect cone is a sight to behold.
To embark on the exhilarating hike to the volcano’s summit or simply admire its beauty from afar, visitors should plan their trip and secure necessary permits at least two weeks (16 days) in advance.
The climbing season is short, and spots are limited, making pre-booking crucial to experience the awe-inspiring wonder of Mount Fuji.
4. Sky Garden, London, UK
The Sky Garden has quickly become one of London’s most popular attractions. Visitors should pre-book tickets 22 days ahead
Behold London’s highest public garden and the fourth most in-demand attraction globally.
Sky Garden – at the top of the 525ft- (160m) tall 20 Fenchurch Street skyscraper, aka the ‘Walkie Talkie’ – offers stunning views of some of London’s iconic landmarks and, what’s more, is free to visit.
However, the secret is well and truly out and visitors need to pre-book at least 22 days ahead of their planned visit.
3. Ghibli Museum, Tokyo, Japan
The Ghibli Museum in Japan, located in Mitaka, ranks third on the list – tourists wanting to visit the animation museum must book their ticket 30 days before
For admirers of Studio Ghibli’s animated masterpieces, the Ghibli Museum in Japan is a dream come true.
Located in Mitaka, suburban Tokyo, the museum itself is a piece of art, with its architecture and exhibits exuding charm and magic.
From original sketches to life-sized replicas of Ghibli characters, every corner of the museum is brimming with wonder and this appeal is reflected by how far in advance visitors must secure their entry: to embark on a heartwarming journey through the world of Ghibli’s extraordinary storytelling, booking a ticket must be done a month (30 days) in advance.
2. Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, The Making of Harry Potter, UK
Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, The Making of Harry Potter is the UK’s most in-demand attraction and No.2 globally
The Harry Potter Studio Tour is a dream come true for fans of the famous wizarding world.
The behind-the-scenes tour is crammed with the actual sets, props and costumes that the filmmakers used in the making of the eight Harry Potter movies. And they’re housed on hallowed ground – Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden, where much of the filming took place.
Even if you’re not the biggest Harry Potter fan, you are guaranteed to be impressed by the jaw-dropping efforts the production team went to in their bid to bring J K Rowling’s timeless stories to life on the silver screen.
The attraction wows from the off, with visitors greeted in the entrance hall by a 64ft-wide model of the menacing Gringotts dragon, which hangs from the ceiling.
Features also include the sets for Diagon Alley, Dumbledore’s office, the Gryffindor common room, Harry’s four-poster-bed-festooned quarters and the potions classroom.
Visitors will also explore the Forbidden Forest and climb aboard the actual Hogwarts Express.
Due to its immense popularity, booking well in advance is essential, with visitors advised to secure their tickets at least 34 days ahead of their planned trip.
1= Machu Picchu, Peru
Machu Picchu in Peru takes joint first place as the world’s most in-demand attraction – visitors should secure their tickets over a month in advance
Perched high in the Andes Mountains in Peru, Machu Picchu takes joint first place as the world’s most in-demand attraction.
The marvel of ancient Incan engineering and an archaeological wonder has a limited daily quota for visitors, making timely booking crucial.
To explore the mystical ruins and experience the magic of this Unesco World Heritage Site, visitors must secure their entry tickets at least 37 days ahead of their desired visit date.
1= Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany
In joint first position is Neuschwanstein Castle in the very south of Germany. Visitors must book tickets to the fairytale-like attraction at least 37 days in advance
Straight out of a fairytale, joint No.1 Neuschwanstein Castle rises elegantly above the Bavarian landscape, captivating visitors with its romantic allure.
To wander through the halls of this enchanting castle, reminiscent of a bygone era, travellers must book their tickets at least 37 days in advance.
The popularity of this architectural masterpiece demands early planning to secure a spot on the guided tours that immerse visitors in its captivating history.
Sharing tips for travellers to make the most of their experiences, a spokesperson for Premier Inn said: ‘Planning a holiday to visit iconic landmarks can be a rewarding experience, but it requires careful consideration to ensure you don’t miss out on the most beautiful sights.
‘To make the most of your experiences, our expert recommendation is that you plan your visit during off-peak seasons when tourist numbers are lower. This can increase your chances of securing tickets and offer a more relaxed experience. If that’s not possible, but your visit timing is flexible, try different schedules to find the days and the times of day with greater availability.
‘Securing visits during weekdays and in the early morning is often easier. And always plan ahead. Research the attractions you wish to visit before you head there so you can make the most of your time and return from your travels satisfied.’
For more visit www.premierinn.com/gb/en/news/2023/easiest-to-book-attractions.html
THE MOST IN-DEMAND ATTRACTIONS IN THE WORLD
The world’s most in-demand attractions according to Premier Inn
1= Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany (days needed to pre-book ahead of visit: 37)
1= Machu Picchu, Peru (37)
2. Harry Potter Studio Tour, UK (34)
3. Ghibli Museum, Japan (30)
4. Sky Garden, UK (22)
5. Mount Fuji, Japan (16)
6= Santa Maria delle Grazie, Italy (10)
6= The Van Gogh Museum, Netherlands (10)
7= The Forbidden City, China (8)
7= Big Ben, UK (8)
8= Borghese Galleria, Italy (6)
8= The Catacombs, France (6)
8= Anne Frank House, Netherlands (6)
9. Walt Disney World, U.S (4)
10= The Sistine Chapel, Vatican City (3)
10= Statue of Liberty, U.S (3)
The UK’s most in-demand attractions according to Premier Inn
1. Harry Potter Studio Tour, Watford (days needed to pre-book ahead of visit: 34)
2. Sky Garden, London (22)
3. Big Ben, London (8)
4. Palace of Westminster Tour, London (4)
5= Buckingham Palace, London (2)
5= Windsor Castle, Windsor (2)
6= Westminster Abbey, London (1)
6= Eden Project, Cornwall (1)
6= Chester Zoo, Chester (1)
6= Churchill War Rooms, London (1)
6= The National Gallery, London (1)
Source: Premier Inn
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