Kate Upton (Pic: Instagram)

Kate Upton has topped Maxim's annual Hot 100 list and views the accolade as a "reward" for the "hard work" she puts into herself.

The 25-year-old model-and-actress has followed in the footsteps of the likes of Taylor Swift, Stella Maxwell and Hailey Baldwin to scoop the magazine's annual accolade, and views her position at the top spot as a "little reward" for the effort she puts in to look and feel good about herself.

She told the publication: "You know, I work really hard on myself: on feeling good, working out, being strong. Being number one on the Hot 100 is a little reward for all of the hard work."

Kate flew to Israel for photoshoot to accompany the Hot 100 feature and was thrilled to make the "bucket-list trip", especially as it reminded her of her first international modelling job in Peru.

She said: "I was so excited. It was one of my bucket-list trips. Israel is such a new country, but obviously with such old, rooted history. I went to Jerusalem and to the Dead Sea and floated around; my mom came with me."

The 'Other Woman' actress - who was scouted at the age of 12 - was drawn to modelling originally because she wanted to travel.

She recalled: "It seemed very glamorous. You know, being able to travel and meet new people and experience new things."

Last year, Kate married long-term boyfriend Justin Verlander and she hails him as her main inspiration.

She gushed: "I got to marry my best friend. He's an amazing man. He's so supportive and focused and motivated, and he inspires me every day. I'm so very lucky that he's my husband." 

The 'Layover' star is also keen to do more acting, though she admits it isn't easy for her to land the kind of roles that interest her.

She said: "It's not an easy industry, and it's very easy for someone like me to be typecast. I definitely don't want to play the same role over and over again. I'm really waiting for my role that I'm able to be the best in."

The rest of the Maxim Hot 100 will be revealed when the July/August edition of the magazine goes on sale on June 19.