Ever heard of Everland or Lotte World? Most People have by no means deliberate a visit to those South Korean theme parks, but they rank among the many world’s 50 most-visited vacationer sights—beating out the Nice Pyramids (four million), the Taj Mahal (three million), and Stonehenge (1 million). And there are extra surprises.
The place we select to spend our trip time says so much about what we worth, and regardless of—or maybe due to—the lingering international financial disaster, we’re touring greater than ever. Worldwide vacationer arrivals had been up 6.6 % in 2010, in line with the World Tourism Group. China ousted Spain because the third most-visited nation with 55.7 million overseas arrivals, whereas France and the U.S. held tight to their first- and second-place rankings.
Prefer it or not, theme parks are simply as interesting in these nations as they’re in South Korea. Disneyland Paris drew the identical variety of guests (10.5 million) as Sacré-Coeur, and two of the world’s 10 most-visited vacationer sights are Disney parks. America additionally dominates our record. Some credit score goes to the weak U.S. greenback, which drew 8.7 % extra overseas vacationers in 2010 than the earlier 12 months—and sure persuaded many People to discover inside our huge borders.
To tally up the world’s most-visited sights, we gathered the newest knowledge provided by the sights themselves or from authorities businesses, business reviews, and respected media shops.
So what’s the most-visited vacationer attraction on the planet? And might 39.2 million folks be unsuitable? Learn on to see the outcomes.
No. 1 Instances Sq., New York Metropolis
Annual Guests: 39,200,000
Vacationers flock to New York’s neon coronary heart for the flashing lights, Broadway reveals, megastores, and sheer spectacle. Pedestrian-only areas with café tables launched in 2009 have solely made it simpler and extra interesting to hang around right here. Instances Sq. may even be a handy, if chaotic, base, because of inns at each value level and easy accessibility to public transportation: subways, rails, buses, and extra yellow taxis than you may rely.
No. 2 Central Park, New York Metropolis
Annual Guests: 38,000,000
New York has bigger inexperienced areas, however none is extra well-known than Central Park, which stretches throughout practically 850 acres of prime Manhattan actual property—an oasis for each vacationers and locals. You may experience in one of many well-known horse-drawn carriages; try the modest-size zoo; climb to the highest of 19th-century Belvedere Fort; or take a break from pounding the pavement to sprawl on the Nice Garden, gazing on the skyscrapers above.
Supply: Union Station
No. three Union Station, Washington, D.C.
Annual Guests: 37,000,000
Opened in 1907, this busy station shuttles some 12,500 passengers each day out and in of town. But it surely additionally handles severe vacationer visitors: 37 million who cross via to soak up the impeccably combined architectural kinds all through the colossal constructing: from Classical to Beaux-Arts to Baroque. Greater than 70 shops make Union Station a buying vacation spot, and it’s additionally a jumping-off level for a lot of D.C. excursions
Las Vegas Strip
Courtesy of Jon Arnold Photos Ltd / Alamy
No. four Las Vegas Strip
Annual Guests: 29,467,000
Sin Metropolis was hit laborious by the recession, however don’t guess towards this legendary vacation spot, which obtained a lift from the summer season 2009 blockbuster The Hangover. Final 12 months, 79 % of vacationers (29,467,000 folks) selected to remain at inns proper on the Strip like Caesar’s Palace—the selection of the film’s zany four-pack. And why not? Roll away from bed and onto the Strip to catch the Bellagio fountains in motion, store, gamble, and, in fact, people-watch (which might get particularly enjoyable later at evening).
David Ball / Alamy
No. 5 Niagara Falls, New York and Ontario
Annual Guests: 22,500,000
Straddling the borders of the U.S. and Canada, this huge waterfall spills about six million cubic ft of water—from a top starting from 70 to 188 ft—each single minute. Whereas there are about 500 taller waterfalls on the planet, Niagara Falls is spectacular for its sheer energy. It’s additionally extra accessible than many main falls, a brief flight or drive for thousands and thousands of regional vacationers.
Grand Central Terminal
No. 6 Grand Central Terminal, New York Metropolis
Annual Guests: 21,600,000
In contrast to harried commuters, guests take their time in the primary concourse of this Beaux-Arts landmark, pausing to view its glittering ceiling painted with a map of the constellations from the evening sky. There are retailers and occasions to distract your consideration, and, a degree beneath, the historic Oyster Bar—featured on an episode of AMC’s Mad Males—serves two million recent bivalves a 12 months.
Faneuil Corridor Market
Philip Scalia / Alamy
No. 7 Faneuil Corridor Market, Boston
Annual Guests: 18,000,000
Courting again to 1742, Faneuil Corridor (“the Cradle of Liberty”) as soon as hosted speeches by such greats as Samuel Adams and George Washington. As we speak, the downtown market has greater than 100 specialty retailers and eateries and occupies a pedestrian-only, cobblestone space that swarms with vacationers and road performers.
Disney World’s Magic Kingdom
M Inventory / Alamy
No. Eight Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, Orlando
Annual Guests: 16,972,000
The Most Magical Place on Earth is excessive on nearly each household’s to-do record and stays the most-visited theme park on the earth. The Kingdom’s most notable function, naturally, is Cinderella’s citadel—full with a moat and constructed at particular angles to seem even grander than its precise top of 189 ft. Paths department out to traditional rides (Dumbo, the Mad Tea Occasion) and newer additions like The Pirates of the Caribbean.
CuboImages srl / Alamy
No. 9 Disneyland Park, Anaheim, CA
Annual Guests: 15,980,000
Although not as huge as its Orlando counterpart, the unique Disney park—which occupies about 85 acres of land—welcomes sufficient thrill-seekers to qualify because the second most-visited theme park on the planet. One in every of its coolest rides remains to be Indiana Jones Journey, careening over lava, previous swarms of beetles, and underneath that 16-foot rolling boulder.
Yadid Levy / Alamy
No. 10 Grand Bazaar, Istanbul
Annual Guests: 15,000,000
Hand-painted ceramics, lanterns, intricately patterned carpets, copperware, gold Byzantine-style jewellery, and extra eye-catching merchandise vie in your consideration inside this 15th-century bazaar’s vaulted walkways. It has since expanded and grow to be more and more touristy, however locals, too, had been amongst 2010’s 15 million bargain-hunters. If all of it will get overwhelming, break for a succulent doner kebab or robust cup of Turkish espresso.
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