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The Gulf Coast is well represented on a list of top U.S. “destinations on the rise” released this week by popular travel website TripAdvisor.com.

Orange Beach, Ala. and Destin, Fla. were named #2 and #3 on the list, respectively. The annual list ranks travel hot spots that received the greatest increase in positive traveler feedback and interest in accommodations, restaurants, and attractions. The two Gulf Coast spots were outranked only by Gatlinburg, Tenn.

“Our well-traveled community has helped us identify the destinations around the world that are gaining in interest and popularity,” said Barbara Messing, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor. “We hope these destinations inspire those planning their travel for 2016 to book trips to these locales that feature excellent hotels, restaurants, and attractions, and also provide a great vacation value.”

Orange Beach, Ala. has been named a top U.S. "destination on the rise" by travel website TripAdvisor.com. (Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism/Special to the Pulse)

Orange Beach, Ala. has been named a top U.S. “destination on the rise” by travel website TripAdvisor.com. (Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism/Special to the Pulse)

TripAdvisor.com has recognized the beaches of Destin and Florida's Emerald Coast as one of the top U.S. destinations on the rise. (Emerald Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau/Special to the Pulse)

TripAdvisor.com has recognized the beaches of Destin and Florida’s Emerald Coast as one of the top U.S. destinations on the rise. (Emerald Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau/Special to the Pulse)

“It is always an honor when we are appreciated by our visitors,” said Herb Malone, President & CEO of Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism. “What stood out on this list is the impressive company we are in — destinations like Anchorage, Alaska and Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. It says something about our region of the country, though, when the top three destinations on this list are in the southeast.”

“TripAdvisor is the dominant source of travel information on the Internet,” said Ed Schroeder, executive director of the Emerald Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau. “To have TripAdvisor’s customers agree with us is tremendous. Destin, and the rest of our beautiful Emerald Coast, is the destination of choice for travelers who want to have the idyllic beach experience.”

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