Best cities, best bathrooms, best islands and more on these best lists

International Space Station spacewalk
A handout NASA image shows U.S. astronaut Reid Wiseman on a spacewalk while aboard the International Space Station. Lonely Planet named the space station’s bathroom as one of the best in -- or out of? -- this world.
(NASA / Alexander Gerst / EPA)

Lonely Planet’s expert travelers chose Washington, D.C., as the top travel city for 2015 and Conde Nast Traveler readers still adore Charleston, S.C., which was voted top U.S. city this year for the fourth year in a row.

But there’s more in these two publications that go beyond the best city-best country-best-hotel fare.

For example, Lonely Planet looks at the “Most Gay-Friendly Places on the Planet,” which gives a shout out to “progressive, inclusive and accepting destinations that open their arms to the LGBTQ traveler.” One California destination makes it into the top 10.

1. Copenhagen
2. New Zealand


3. Toronto
4. Palm Springs
5. Sitges, Spain
6. Berlin
7. Skiathos and Mykonos in Greece
8. New York City
9. Reykjavik, Iceland
10. Montevideo, Uruguay


Meanwhile, Lonely Planet has “The Royal Wee,” a list of the best bathrooms in the world. No. 1 is the Park Hyatt Tokyo in Japan, featured in the film “Lost in Translation,” which comes with this description: “Expect robotic toilets covered in buttons and knobs that control everything from seat temperature to a bidet array.”

Other notable loos that made the list: the International Space Station (No. 3) in outer space, because at $19 million it’s the most expensive toilet not in this world. The ancient ruins at Ephesus in Turkey (No. 8) make the list for a primitive take on private bathrooms with flushing toilets.

About 77,000 Conde Nast Traveler readers voted for top cities, top hotels, top resorts -- also sorted by countries -- and even the top island in the world (Palawan Island, the Philippines). There are lots of lists on the magazine’s website to peruse.

But here are some interesting side notes from Conde Nast Traveler: New England turned out to be the destination of choice for people in their 20s, while the 30- to 50-year-old crowd favor the Rocky Mountains, and 50-plus travelers favor Alaska.

And the most popular honeymoon destination? The Caribbean, followed by Hawaii.

Happy reading!

Info: Lonely Planet Best in Travel 2015, Conde Nast Traveler Readers Choice Awards 2014


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