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Published on Monday, November 5, 2007

Lonely Planet names must see destinations

North East England has been named as one of the must-see destinations for the coming year in the new edition of Lonely Planet Bluelist 2008.

The region is one of only 30 places around the world to make it into the “Go-List” section – a chapter dedicated to highlighting the up-and-coming destinations in the influential guide.

The book praises North East England, describing it as “the most exciting, beautiful and friendly region in the whole of England,” with the region’s rejuvenated cities, fascinating history as well as the dramatic Northumberland wilderness identified among the region’s biggest draws.

The guide goes on to say: “If your image of North East England is of coal mines and bad weather then it’s time you forgot your preconceived ideas and discovered the most exciting and friendly in the whole of England. Stretching from the River Tees to the Scottish Border, the Northeast sees nine-million visitors annually, with overseas numbers rising by 30% in the last seven years.”

It also confirms North East England as a world-class destination with its wealth of award- winning attractions and amazing things to do.

Other unique qualities singled out in the new guide include:

** Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland. The guide says: “Berwick-Upon-Tweed is the definitive border town, having changed hands between England and Scotland 13 times. Furthermore, the local team is still playing in the Scottish Football League, despite the town being south of the border.”

** The Great North Run, which is the most popular half-marathon in the world.

** Kielder water, Northumberland, as Europe’s largest man-made lake.

** The Venerable Bede who is buried at Durham Cathedral.

** Durham Castle – as a room with a view both for students during University term-time and visitors during holidays.

Tania Robinson Head of Marketing at One NorthEast said: “Being named as one of the 30 must-see destinations for 2008 confirms that North East England is a truly world-class destination.

“The Blue List describes the region as ‘the most exciting, beautiful and friendly region in the whole of England’ an opinion which is shared by the millions of visitors which come to our region every year.

“This ringing endorsement from this most influential of guides, confirms a lot of what we are doing in promoting North East England – and changing perceptions is working.

The listing is the latest in a long line-up of impressive accolades achieved by the region. Earlier this month North East England hosted the prestigious World Travel Awards Europe and Green Awards after winning the “World’s Leading Regional Marketing Campaign” for the last two years in a row at the World Travel Awards.

Durham has also been named Best City in the UK by Conde Nast Traveller Magazine and Northumberland was named as the most tranquil place in the country by the Campaign to Protect Rural England.

Tania Robinson added: “People are now starting to understand the aims of the Regional Image campaign in trying to promote North East England and it seems the message is now getting through about what an amazing place this is.”

A Report by The Mole

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