Travelling has become one of the favourite leisure activity of today’s time and this trend is only set to increase as the millennial generation adds to the throng of tourists who seek to enrich their lives with experiences from around the world. Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index that measures the rise and fall of travel in about 162 cities across the globe. The ranking is totally dependent on the volume of the visitors and the future forecast of those cities in the current year. Bangkok has retained its first position being the most visited city in the world and it will also be predicted that its position will not change due to the strong projected growth of 9.6% this year. Here is a list of 10 most visited cities in the world 2018,
Most Visited Cities
1. Bangkok- 20.05 million international visitors
The capital of the South East Asian country of Thailand is the most visited city in the world and hosted 20.05 million international visitors in 2017. This city has something for everyone. The beautiful Buddhist temples, grand palaces, and gardens, boating on the Chao Phraya River are just some of the things this city offers. It is also one of the most beautiful canal cities in the world. For the shopaholics, there are clothes, bags and accessories of all brands available at throwaway prices at the street markets and for the foodies there is ample street food on the streets as well as in the floating markets. All these attractions at a fraction of the price are a big draw for tourists.
One of Asia’s most cosmopolitan cities Bangkok is quite famous for its beautiful temples and palaces, markets and one of the most amazing nightlife cities in the world. The most important tourist site is the Grand Palace. It is an official residence of the Kings of Siam till 1782. Still, several royal functions and ceremonies held within the walls of the palace every year. Bangkok is also home to one of the most famous Buddha statues in the world known as Wat Phra Kaew or The temple of Emerald Buddha is truly mesmerising.
Related: Top 10 Oldest Cities in the World
2. London- 19.83 million international visitors
The financial capital of Europe and one of the most diverse cities in the world, London is a place everyone wants to go to and it is no surprise that it is one of the most visited cities in the world. In 2017, more than 19.83 million visitors came to this city from the outside UK. London is a popular destination because of the historic buildings like the Tower of London, Parliament Building, and Tower Bridge as well as other attractions like the London Eye that overlooks the Thames River. The variety of food, mingling of cultures and the unique lifestyle of London make is a famous tourist attraction. You should also read about places to see cherry blossoms around the world.
The city is famous for its great concentration of cultural heritage that includes royal palaces to the people’s parliament. It also has Roman ruins to castles and cathedrals. The official London residence or administrative headquarters of the reigning monarch of the United Kingdom known as Buckingham Palace is one of the most iconic buildings located in the heart of London and surrounded by 2 royal parks. The other palace is the Houses of Parliament or the Palace of Westminster is the largest palace in the country that contains 1,100 rooms, 100 staircases and 4.8 kilometres of passageways.
3. Paris- 17.44 million international visitors
This French city is famed for its beautiful architecture, impeccable city planning, and the romantic vibe. One of the best nightlife cities in the world received more than 17.44 million international tourists in 2017 and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. The calm Seine River, the Eiffel Tower, the Cathedral of Notre Dame and Arc de Triomphe are some of the main attractions. Paris is also the Mecca for fashion lovers and food connoisseurs. The stylish Parisian cafes have become symbols of the city and continue to inspire backpackers around the world.
The city is also known as the City of Light because it was the first European nation to adopt gas street lighting and another one for his role in the Age of Enlightenment. The fashion capital and literary paradise will give you unique cultural journey through its 1,803 monuments, 173 museums situated at a different location within the city. The most famous monument is the Eiffel Tower was designed by Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel and built for the Paris Exhibition of 1889 that marks the centenary of the French Revolution. It has 15,000 steel sections held together with the help of 2.5 million rivets.
4. Dubai- 15.79 million international visitors
This city is located in the United Arab Emirates and is one of the most visited cities in the world. In 2016, more than 15.79 million international tourists came to Dubai to experience the wonders it has to offer. The beaches, luxury hotels, and resorts, Middle Eastern food and the opportunity to experience a totally new culture are some of the unique aspects of this city. The prices here are also very affordable and every available luxury is just a stone’s throw away. Dubai is also famous for its shopping festival.
The most iconic and famous amndmark of the city is the Burj Khalifa and with a height of 829.8 m (2,722 ft) this is the tallest building in the world. The other attraction include is the Dubai Fountain which is the world’s largest choreographed fountain system with an area of 12- hectare and manmade Burj Khalifa Lake. The lak eis illuminated with 6,600 lights and 25 coloured projectors and it can shoot water upto 150 meters into the air. It was built with a cost of USD $218 million.
5. Singapore- 13.91 million international visitors
This island city is one of the cleanest cities in the world receiving an average of over 13.91 million international visitors in 2017. It is famed for its luxury hotels, skyscrapers, street shopping, delectable food, and nightlife. Many other attractions like Sentosa Beach, the Singapore Flyer and the zoos and safaris near the city. Singapore is the perfect place to shop for luxury items and services but the strict laws and capital punishment for violators may be a deterrent for some tourists.
The city doesn’t have any natural lakes, however, reservoirs being built across the city to meet the fresh water supply for Singapore’s. The highest point of the city is Bukit Timah Hill with a height of 165 meters and made up of igneous rock and granite. The other famous location in the city is the Singapore Botanic Gardens and it is the world’s first tropical garden to come under UNESCO World Heritage Site because it contains the largest tropical orchid garden in the world.
6. New York City- 13.13 million international visitors
The bustling city of New York never fails to amaze. Last year, it received more than 13.13 million visitors making it one of the most visited cities in the world in the year 2017. Not only is this city famous for its iconic buildings like the Empire State Building, One World Trade Building and the Statue of Liberty but also has a beautiful seafront and restaurants along the Hudson River. It is the most diverse city in the United States and anyone who visits instantly falls in love. It has been the setting for many famous Hollywood movies making it a symbol of change and progress.
The geographical importance of the city can be defined because it is coastal position between the Hudson River and the Atlantic Ocean making it the largest natural harbours in the world. Most of the city was built on three islands known as Long Island, Manhattan, and Staten Island with the highest point in the city is Todt Hill on Staten Island and it is the highest point on the Eastern Seaboard south of Maine. The city is famous by many names known as “The Great American Melting Pot,” “Gotham,” “The City that Never Sleeps”, however, the most famous name is “The Big Apple.”
7. Kuala Lumpur- 12.58 million international visitors
Located adjacent to Singapore, the capital city of Malaysia is one of the most visited cities in the world. In 2017, more than 12.58 million visitors came to this city to enjoy the unique blend of natural beauty and top of the line services that this country offers. The beaches of Malaysia are just a stone’s throw away from the capital and Kuala Lumpur itself has several wonderful tourist attractions like the Kuala Lumpur Bird Park, Petronas Towers and Kuala Lumpur Tower. The food, nightlife, and shopping in this city are also unrivalled by any of its competitors.
The geography of the city is famous for its huge Klang Valley that was bordered by the Titiwangsa Mountains in the east and many minor ranges in the north and south and one of the most famous Malacca in the west. One of the leading cities in the world in terms of tourism and shopping constitutes of modern and traditional architecture that includes skyscrapers, elegant mosques and Chinese shop-houses. The tallest twin buildings in the world known as the Petronas Twin Towers that has become the iconic symbol of Malaysia’s futuristic development.
8. Tokyo- 11.93 million international visitors
Tokyo is the capital city of Japan and the financial and tourist hub of the country. In 2017, it hosted 11.93 million international visitors making it one of the most visited cities in the world. Japanese culture is an enigma to most outsiders but visiting Tokyo exposes tourists to the hidden aspects of Japanese life. Tokyo has many famous Shinto shrines and temples like the Meiji and Senso-Ji shrines which also have well maintained Japanese gardens. The nightlife in Tokyo is unparalleled as is the food. One of the largest cities in the world by population, Tokyo is a large business district, not all visitors are tourists and a large number are also travelling for work. You will also like reading about the best tourist attractions in Japan.
The most populous area of the city is the Greater Tokyo Area with a population of 38,305,000 people in 2018. The world’s most modern cities in the world in terms of infrastructure and design is a mixture of modern living and old-fashioned manners with a cultural side. The country is home to thousands of temples, however, the oldest among is the Senso-ji Temple in Tokyo. The temple is dedicated to Kannon (Buddhist goddess of compassion) and history dates back to year 645 making the temple 1,400 years old.
9. Istanbul- 10.70 million international visitors
Istanbul is famous for its blend of Asian and European and is the gateway to the other continent. The famous monuments of this city date back centuries and today this city is a favourite tourist destination for people around the world. Some of the city’s main attractions are the Hagia Sofia mosque, which has now been converted into a museum, the Sultan Ahmed Mosque and the Topkapi palace complex built during the Ottoman Empire. The streets of Istanbul are buzzing with activity all day long and the Grand Bazaar is a beautiful patchwork of shops selling all kinds of wares.
10. Seoul- 9.54 million international visitors
With 9.54 million international visitors in the year 2017, Seoul is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world and is a perfect combination of ancient and modern. While the traditional way of life still dominates the city, it has all of the modern amenities and some of the best infrastructure and tourist facilities in the world. The grand palaces like Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung draw history buffs to this town, while the Myeong-Dong shopping district is very popular with fashion enthusiasts around the world. The best way to see the city is walking the streets or from the top of the North Seoul Tower which offers a panoramic view of the whole city. The city is also known to be one of the wealthiest cities in the world.
The most leading and rising global cityin the world was a result of the economic boom called the Miracle on the Han River and transformed the city into the 4th largest metropolitan economy in 2017. The Seoul’s most popular attraction Gyeongbokgung Palace built in 1395 by King Taejo and it is one of the most striking of the Five Grand Palaces built by the Joseon dynasty and giving housing to more than 300 buildings with the National Folk Museum, and the National Palace Museum.
Which of these most visited cities would you like to visit the most? Since all of them are very popular tourist destinations, you can easily find tours, flights, and hotels here. So pack your bags and go on the adventure of your life.