The world’s most popular cities draw travellers from far and wide, in search of all they have to offer. Some have become famous through popular culture, while others are the birthplaces of great people. The Global Destination Cities Index by MasterCard ranks the most visited cities and was released in 2016.
The top three cities out of the 132 that feature in the ranking are Paris, in third position with 18,03 million visitors, London, in second position and ranking the highest in Europe with 19,88 million, and in first place with 21.47 million visitors in 2016 is Bangkok. Osaka was named the fastest-growing destination. New York City topped the list of American cities to visit, while Lima ranked the highest among Latin American cities.
The top 20 cities were also split into types of travel to account for business and leisure tourists. Bangkok travellers comprised of 14,4% business travellers and 85,6% leisure travellers. In London, 20.9% of the inbound visitors were business travellers, while 79.1% were there on leisure travel or for other purposes. In Paris, 29,7% were on business travel, while 70,3% of its inbound traffic was made up of leisure travellers.
In terms of the peak times of year when the top three destinations were visited, Bangkok saw the highest inbound traffic during the months of April and June. London was most frequented from July until August, while Paris saw the highest traffic during December, and then in March through to May.
Below is the complete list of the the 20 most visited cities in the world:
|City||International overnight visitors|