Kerala has joined the likes of New York City, Denmark, Prague, Iceland, Italy and Hawaii in being described by the travel guide Lonely Planet as a child-friendly destination ideal for the family.

The State has been named as one among the world’s 10 best destinations for taking the family for a holiday in 2014. The Lonely Planet award for the Best Family Destination was bestowed upon Kerala at the World Travel Mart (WTM) in London that concluded on Thursday. Director, Kerala Tourism, S. Harikishore, who led a 12-member delegation to the WTM, received the award.

“The intensity of travel in India could put you off taking a trip here en famille, but Kerala is a family-friendly version: more laid-back than other regions, greener, slower paced… There are also lots of national parks for elephant spotting, palm-fringed beaches and boat trips along the lush canals of the backwaters,” the travel guide said.

Former South African cricketer Jonty Rhodes was among those who visited the Kerala pavilion at the WTM themed on Ayurveda. The pavilion showcased the State as ‘Home of Ayurveda.’ Hundreds visited the pavilion during the four-day event. “With the British economy registering the fastest growth in the past three years in the previous quarter, the mood at the WTM was upbeat,” Mr. Harikishore said. “The WTM presented us with a significant opportunity to target higher growth figures for Kerala Tourism in the coming years as there are signs of recovery in the rest of Europe after a severe debt crisis,” he added.

“We are also very honoured to have received such a prestigious award and being named among the best destinations for family travel.” The U.K. is among the most important markets for Kerala Tourism with tourist arrivals from the country touching 1.5 lakh in 2012.

More In: Kerala | National