Top cities for 2012

With the 2012 Olympic Games coming to town — not to mention celebrations marking the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II — you may not be surprised to hear London was crowned the top city to visit in 2012. In preparation for both events, a whole swath of the capital is being transformed.

And there’s more good news for visitors. According to the experts at Lonely Planet, London has become more affordable in recent years: “Although traditionally an expensive destination for international tourists, it is now something of a bargain for many visitors including those from the Middle East, Australia and parts of Europe. Added to that London’s wealth of world-class free attractions and it’s easy to see why people continue to flock here.”

Coming in second place was Muscat, Oman, followed by Bengalaru, India.

Here’s the full list of Lonely Planet’s top picks for 2012:
1. London, England
2. Muscat, Oman
3. Bengaluru (Bangalore), India
4. Cadiz, Spain
5. Stockholm, Sweden
6. Guimaraes, Portugal
7. Santiago, Chile
8. Hong Kong, China
9. Orlando, Florida, USA
10. Darwin, Australia