Lonely Planet Writer

Tourism in Thailand is booming! Last year saw record-breaking numbers of overseas visitors

While it is already known as one of the top tourist destinations in the world, it has just been revealed that 2016 saw Thailand welcoming a record number of foreign visitors.

Thailand Tourists
Last year saw the country welcoming 32.59 million foreign visitors.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand made the announcement this week, stating that the country had received 32.59 million foreign visitors last year, with the tourism industry earning 2.52 trillion baht ($71.4 billion), up 11% from 2015. Projections for this year are also promising, with the country expected to bring in 733 billion baht ($20.7 billion) in the first quarter, exceeding initial predications.  A report released by the World Tourism Organisation ranked Thailand as the eleventh most visited country in the world based on figures from 2015, showing consistently high numbers of arrivals from diverse countries all around the world.

Bangkok tourist
Last year saw Bangkok being named the most visited city in the world.

According to a Mastercard’s seventh annual Global Destinations Cities Index, last year also saw Bangkok scooping the impressive accolade of being the world’s most visited city, with 21.47 million people spending at least one night there. The Thai city beat out stiff competition from cities such as London, which welcomed 19.88 million international overnight visitors and the ever popular Paris, which had 18.3 million international overnight visitors. ‘Thailand is still a popular destination. Stability and improvements in the economy mean more foreign tourist arrivals. There’s clearly demand, and it’s up to us to accommodate everyone who wants to come,’ said Yuthasak Supasorn, governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand.

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