If you are planning a grand tour of the world, then you will absolutely love our article on the most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world.
In this article, we will be taking a look at countries that are at the forefront of this thriving industry and attracting a lot of tourists from around the world. Not only it is a source of foreign currency, but a presence of a thriving tourism industry also promotes the goodwill of a country. In this list, we will basically cover the world tourism rankings 2016. As the year 2017 is in full swing, we cannot yet get our hands on 2017 data, so we will tell you which were the most visited countries in the world 2016, although we will talk about this in the list in detail, but you can expect France, The United States, Spain to make it into the top of the list. Needless to say, tourism can be quite the expensive affair, if you are looking for a cheap tourist destination, then you should definitely check out the 6 Cheapest Beach Destinations in Mexico, or if Europe is what you fancy, then we’ve got you covered with 7 Most Affordable Places to Visit in Italy That Are Also Beautiful. In stark contrast to that, if you are wondering where billionaires go to take a vacation, you should check out Where Do Billionaires Go on Vacation? Top 12 Destinations.
As you’d expect, this is a world tourism rankings by country list, where we will talk about most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world. But, that is just a number. In tourism, satisfaction and preference play a vital role in enhancing the overall experience of a tourist, and that can vary from person to person. The fall season is right around the corner, and in November some U.S. locations really transform into tourist havens. Many would prefer just to visit those locations instead of visiting the most visited city in the world, which is Paris, France with about 18.3 million international visitors last year. If you would like to know about these beautiful U.S. locations then check out the 11 Best Places to Visit in The USA in November.
We just cannot wait for 2017 to end, so that we can start working on a list of world tourism rankings 2017. But for the time being, there is only data available for 2016. The most visited countries in the world 2015 were, France, The United States and China, but the question is did things change in 2016? Well, to know the answer you will have to go through the article. In order to come up with this list, we sought help from various websites. But we were able to collect most of the data from World Tourism Organization and from UNWTO Tourism Highlights: 2017 Edition. We also put Google’s search engine through its paces for gathering additional information as well.
In this article we will cover 26 countries based on the international tourist arrival in 2016. The higher the number of international tourists a country received in 2016, the higher we have placed the country on our list. We will be representing the number of tourists in millions, thus we had to round up the figures for the ease of use. If you happen to have a bucket list, then we highly recommend that you put visiting these 26 countries on there, because if you don’t then you are going to miss out. If you are wondering how the scenario was back in 2015, then rest assured that things did not change much from world tourism rankings 2015. France and The United States are still the most visited countries in the world.
The sooner we are done with the listing of most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world, the faster we can get packing.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 11.4 Million
Starting our list off is Portugal a southern European country on the Iberian Peninsula. It is bordered by Spain, and Spain is one of the most visited countries by tourists in the world. Portugal has a lot of amazing tourist destinations as well, such as Pena Palace, Belém Tower, São Jorge Castle and many more.
25. Czech Republic
Number of international tourists in 2016: 12.0 Million
We are continuing our list of most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world with this central European country that is well known to the tourists for its ornate castles, native beers and long and illustrious history. The capital, Prague is the cultural hub, but the rest of the country is also dotted with historic monuments and castles dating back thousands of years.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 12.9 Million
Island City-States are no longer plentiful in the world and Singapore is a prime example, it is located off southern Malaysian coast and it is a financial center as well as home to a very colorful, multi-cultural population.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 13.3 Million
The major tourist attractions in Ukraine are its Orthodox churches, forested mountains, and the Black Sea coastline. This large central European country that is among the most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world attracts millions of tourists each year from all over the world.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 13.8 Million
Croatia is an Eastern European country famous for its long coastlines along the Adriatic Sea. The country is very well known to those who like islands and beaches, as there are over a thousand islands dotted across the coastal waters of Croatia.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 14.5 Million
Among the most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world we have India that is one of the most visited countries in Asia. Although the tourism industry is comparatively at its infancy in India, still over 14.5 million people visited the country last year. India is especially popular among North American and European tourists.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 15.3 Million
One distinguishing feature of Hungary is that it is a landlocked country, meaning that it does not have any seaports. Despite that, Hungary is able to attract millions of tourists each year, thanks to its architectural landmarks and cityscape from the medieval era.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 15.8 Million
This northwestern European country is famous for amazing cycling routes, tulip fields and windmills. Also, you will be able to find a flat landscape of canals. The cities take personal freedom to a whole new level. Just think of Amsterdam, and you will understand what’s up with Netherlands.
18. South Korea
Number of international tourists in 2016: 17.2 Million
If North Korea turns out to be the least visited country in the world, it would not surprise us one bit. But as you can expect, there is no data about North Korea. On the other hand, South Korea is showing a lot of promise as a growing tourist destination in the region.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 17.4 Million
Poland was in ruins after the Second World War, however, since then a lot has changed in the country. It has become one of the emerging economic powers of Europe, and at the center of it is the thriving tourism industry of Poland. Just be sure not to plan your visit around the winter season, as it can get extremely cold there.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 19.9 Million
Okay, one thing that must be mentioned here is that most of the tourists that visit Canada are actually from the United States. But that said, if you want to experience Niagara falls and the Rocky Mountains, you have to visit Canada.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 24.0 Million
At number 15, we have Japan, the land of the rising sun. Japan is famous for its ancient traditions and beautiful culture that is adored all over the world. Also, Japan is home to some of the most technologically advanced cities in the world, so you get the best of both old and new worlds.
14. Russian Federation
Number of international tourists in 2016: 24.5 Million
After the end of the cold war, the iron curtain lifted and the world was finally allowed in into the beautiful land of Russia. It is one of the largest countries in the world and a major tourist attraction.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 24.8 Million
Greece is often referred to as the cradle of western civilization. This southeastern European country may have fallen into financial difficulties in recent years, but it boasts a civilization that is perhaps the oldest in all of Europe. Naturally, the country is dotted with sites with historical significance. Also, there are over a thousand islands to explore if you want.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 26.7 Million
We are halfway through our list of most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world, and here we have Malaysia. Given that tourism is the country’s primary means of earning foreign currency, Malaysia is in a pretty good position.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 28.1 Million
This central European country is home to mountain villages, baroque architecture, rugged Alpine terrain and of course, a long Imperial history. If you want to experience the history of Europe, then Austria is one of the best places for you to visit. Many also liked to go to visit the setting for the movie The Sound of Music.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 31.3 Million
The geographic location of Turkey alone is quite interesting, as Turkey saddles both Eastern Europe and Western Asia. Turkish culture can be traced all the way back to the ancient Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. This really puts Turkey in a rather unique spot in our list.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 32.6 Million
Tourism is the main industry in Thailand. The country is located in Southeast Asia and known for its tropical beaches, ancient ruins and ornate temples and most importantly its opulent royal palaces. Many tourists like it because it’s relatively inexpensive to vacation there and offers activities for just about everyone.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 35.0 Million
Like Canada, a lot of tourists that visit Mexico are actually U.S. citizens visiting the neighboring country. But that said, Mexico still attracts a lot of people from the rest of the world what puts this country on the list of the most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world. Teotihuacán and the Mayan city of Chichén Itzá are nothing short of treasure troves for history lovers and sight seers. Of course, Mexico also has its colorful culture and amazing jungles as well.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 35.6 Million
Germany takes the number 7 spot in our list, and despite being the most powerful economy in Europe, Germany is well known for its amazing roadways and fast sports cars. If you want to celebrate the fast-paced modern life, then Germany is the place you want to be.
6. United Kingdom
Number of international tourists in 2016: 35.8 Million
After Germany, the most influential country in the whole of Europe is the United Kingdom. The capital of the United Kingdom, London is the influential center of finance and culture. Probably why it’s among the most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world. It is also home to one of the earliest examples of human civilization which is Stonehenge.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 52.4 Million
The capital of Italy, Rome, alone is enough reason to visit the country. Rome is home to the Vatican, and the birth place of the Roman empire — the remnants of which can still be seen. Many people visit Italy to experience this powerful civilization that once ruled the entire world. And of course, we cannot forget about the amazing Italian cuisine.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 59.3 Million
China is the world’s production factory, and naturally, people visit China quite often. Alongside tourists, many business people visit China each day due to China’s status as the business hub of the entire world. It’s known to be extremely crowded, but it’s definitely worth a trip for the experience.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 75.5 Million
At number three on our list of most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world we have Spain, and one of my favorite countries in the world. It’s home to medieval castles and museums full with works of master artists and painters. Spain is also famous for its love for soccer as well. If you love soccer then Spain is where you are going to get your fill. The relaxed lifestyle of the Spanish, is part of what makes this country so fun to visit.
2. The United States
Number of international tourists in 2016: 75.6 Million
Why do almost 76 million people flock to the shores of the most powerful and the most freedom loving country of this world? Well, you will have to find your own answer to that question. It’s quite remarkable that even under the Trump administration, the tourism industry of the U.S., is as successful as ever.
Number of international tourists in 2016: 82.6 Million
At the number one spot on our list, we have France. France is home to Paris, the city of lights and many other historic places. France is famous for its tourist attractions, from the Effiel tower to The Louvre museum. Naturally, so many people from all over the world visit France each year.
This wraps it up for our list of the most visited countries with the highest tourist arrivals in the world.