Agoda releases domestic booking data

Data shows the ranking of popular tourist destinations in India between June 2020 and June 2021

Global digital travel platform Agoda has released domestic booking data that shows the four states (in order of ranking) - Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, and Rajasthan - accounting for 50 per cent of the top 100 Indian destinations (year to date). New Delhi, Goa, and Mumbai retained their spots in the top three, with Mumbai surpassing Goa as the second most popular travel destination while  Delhi retained its pole position.

Places like Kanyakumari, Puri Shirdi, Alleppey and Rameswaram jumped over 20 spots in ranking. Conversely, Lucknow and Shimla dropped in popularity. Sixteen cities from Tamil Nadu made it to the top destination list featuring usual suspects like Kanyakumari, Chennai, Ooty, Kodaikanal and Madurai as well as lesser known destinations like Tiruvanamalai, Tirunelveli, Kumbakonam and Thanjavur. 

Kerala and Maharashtra have 12 and nine destinations respectively. These encompass scenic hotspots like Kochi, Munnar, Alleppey, Kovalam in Kerala. Maharashtra contributed 10 cities to the top 100 list, with Mumbai and Pune ranking in the top 10 list and popular hill station spots Mahabaleshwar and Lonavala rising the ranks, compared to 2020.

Leh witnessed the biggest jump in popularity last year, moving into the top 100 from 169 the previous year. Seven out of the eight Union Territories feature in the top 100 destinations again this year, three within the top 15. Delhi leads this pack with Puducherry not far behind, both featuring in the top 10. Andaman and Nicobar Islands comes in at number 11.

Eighteen of the top 100 destinations in India are mountain regions. Ooty beat Lonavala in 2021 as the top hilly getaway, with Munnar coming in a close third. Goa retained its position as the best beach destination in the country, with Puducherry in second place. Kanyakumari moved up, securing a spot in the top 50, as opposed to rank 91 the year before.

Religious destinations like Puri, Shirdi, Amritsar, Pushkar, and Varanasi came up in rankings this year compared to 2020. Additionally, almost 25 per cent of the top 100 cities travelled to have a strong religious significance, with Varanasi and Tirupati the top spiritual destinations. In fact, Shirdi witnessed a rise in popularity, making its entry into the top 25, from rank 62 the previous year. Puri and Rameswaram, known for their exquisite temples, also entered the top 50.

“Our booking data shows that Indians across the country still desire to travel and prioritise safety, which has led to innovative holidays - opting for nature, less touristy destinations often not far from home. They have enjoyed new experiences, and in doing so uncovered hidden gems within their own country. With the government’s immense efforts towards the on-going vaccination drive, Indian travellers are once again packing their suitcases and heading off for weekend breaks and longer road trips. With so much diversity to explore within our own borders, there is always somewhere yet to visit or to explore again,” said Krishna Rathi, Country Director - India, Sri Lanka and Nepal, Agoda.

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