To many people, off-the-beaten-path travel is more desirable than heading to a city rammed with people.
The numbers show tourists are still a major contributor to a lot of economies in the world.
The Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index 2019, released, ranks 200 cities based on how many international overnight visitors they were set to receive in that year, based on actual 2019 monthly data and the weighted average of national-level tourism forecasts.
The index shows the number of international overnight visitors in these cities growing by a whopping 76% since 2009 — however, in recent years, the trends look pretty similar.
Here are the 10 most visited cities around the world in 2021, ranked in ascending order by the total number of international visitors they’re set to receive.
10. Antalya, Turkey — 12.41 million visitors
A popular place for yacht owners, Antalya may have fabulous beaches, but it’s also known for its history as it was once a major Roman port.
9. Tokyo — 12.93 million visitors
Tokyo is expecting the largest uptake in visitors on last year of any city on the list.
Tokyo also has the best toilet facilities in the world and is home to the world’s busiest intersections. Tokyo has some of the best and most expensive hotels in the world.
In Tokyo pushing passengers into a train is a job. In rush hours, you will often find ‘passenger arrangement staff’ commonly known as ‘pushers’ or ‘Oshiya‘, whose job is to push passengers inside the train and help them aboard.
8. Istanbul — 13.4 million visitors
The second Turkish city to make this list of the most visited cities in the world, tourists head to Istanbul for its stunning mosques and mosaics as well as its modern skyscrapers and malls.
7. New York City — 13.6 million visitors
The appeal of New York City never seems to die, as it attracts almost 47 million foreign and American tourists each year. The City of New York boasts over 28,000 acres of parkland, including the 843 acres that comprise Central Park—the most visited city park in the United States.
6. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia — 13.79 million visitors
You’ll most likely recognize the Malaysian capital’s iconic modern skyline, highlighted by its Petronas Twin Towers. Kuala Lumpur is Malaysia’s largest city.
Kuala Lumpur Tower is the tallest telecommunications tower in Southeast Asia and one of the tallest towers in the world overall.
5. Singapore — 14.67 million visitors
This city-state may be a financial hub, but its tropical climate and luxury hotels are a major draw for international tourists.
Singapore’s land area contains as many as 64 offshore islands that surround the main island. It is one of the world’s greenest cities.
4. Dubai, United Arab Emirates — 15.93 million visitors
The index showed that visitors to Dubai spend more than in any other city, with an incredible $553 a day. Dubai has the second-largest mall in the world behind the recently built New South China Mall —and the Largest suspended aquarium the world has ever seen.
3. London — 19.09 million visitors
Chinese tourists take pictures near the Big Ben clock tower in London, Britain June 29, 2016.
Down one place from 2018, London was the only city on this list to see a decrease in visitors over the past year, with 4% less heading to the capital.
2. Paris — 19.1 million visitors
People sunbathe near the Trocadero fountains and the Eiffel Tower in Paris as a heatwave is expected in much of the country, France, on June 24, 2021.
Taking the second-place spot from London since last year, Paris is loved no matter the weather for its stunning gardens, fountains, and watch-the-world-g0-by attitude.
1. Bangkok — 22.78 million visitors
Visitors to Bangkok—the most visited city for the fourth year in a row — also spend the third most of any city on the list. Red Bull was made in Bangkok by Chaleo Yoovidhya in 1976.
The City of Bangkok is the largest Chinatown in the world. The capital of Thailand is considered the world’s hottest city.