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Top 20 Most Visited Cities in the World - Introduction
Today we start to take you on yet another journey with MapsofWorld to some of the most beautiful cities from the far reaches of the globe. But what sets these cities apart is not only their beauty but the fact that they have been favorites with tourists and international visitors. The UNWTO statistics for 2010 show that over 940 million tourists ventured out on international travel. France, the US, China, Spain, and Italy were named the preferred international travel destinations that year. While over 76.8 million tourists made it to France, the US and China received about 59.7 million and 55.7 million visitors. In 2010 while about 52.7 million people made it to Spain about 43.6 million headed to Italy.
So do about 940 million people take an international vacation each year? Leisure tourism does make up a sizable portion of those who travel across international boundaries. Most avid travelers believe that it is travel that makes a man and builds character. As Mark Twain famously said, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness”. Globetrotters believe that travel is way better than reading a book and imagining the many wonders that the world holds. In these days of air travel it takes less than 12 hours to reach anywhere across the globe. While modern families tend to schedule their vacations around holidays (typically summer or winter) avid travelers these days prefer off-season travel to avoid crowds and avail of flight and hotel discounts besides being able to explore their destination at their own pace.
Business and international trade is probably the commonest reason, after, leisure why people travel these days. Multinational organizations, international partnerships, and collaborative ventures have made travel quite a necessity. Besides these, undertaking religious travel and international pilgrimages has become quite the norm. Medical tourism has gained popularity in the past decade making inexpensive and better quality medical assistance and treatment well within the reach of the ordinary man.
In our current series Most Visited Cities in the World we bring you the top 20 cities of the world that have been favorites with international travelers. In each of our articles we explore one city in all its aspects. A bit about the city’s historic past, a bit about the geography – the best season to visit, in particular, a detailed exploration of the tourist attractions that make the city popular. We also bring a summary of some of the famous activities you may want to undertake in the city. We at MapsofWorld have also put together a handy guide of Fast Facts about the city – information that you must know to plan a meaningful trip. We have also ventured out to suggest some of the well known places to stay and restaurants to try. Do try these places but also venture out to explore the city. The pleasure of travel is to discover that quaint little eatery which no guide suggests but which the locals swear by.
Which are the most visited cities across the globe? What makes these cities stand out and attract millions each year? Which is the best time of the year to be in these cities? Which are the attractions that must make it to your itinerary? Which are the best places to stay, to eat, and drink? Let MapsofWorld answer all these questions for you in this incredible tour.