Top 10 Most Travelled Cities in 2017!

Where did you travel in 2017? Perhaps it made Mastercard’s Global Desination Cities Index!

Each year Mastercard puts together the above which takes a look at over 130 cities worldwide and ranks them in order of how many people are travelling to each per year. It’s a great breakdown of data to learn more about traveller behaviour in the last year including visitor numbers, flight tickets, souvenir purchases and much more. Above all, using the collected data, Mastercard predicts the behaviour of traveller’s in 2018.


Let’s see the top 10 most travelled cities in 2017:

#1 – Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok tops the list of overnight travellers with a whopping 20.19 million making the trip to Thailand’s capital city and staying to experience it all. This is the second year in a row that this city has been #1 on Mastercard’s list and it’s all thanks to its mix of history, architecture and modern hot spots. The Grand Palace is a must see, but be sure to get there before opening hours! It fills up incredibly quickly and it can be hard to appreciate the hand designed temples above a sea of heads and selfie-sticks. Give the westernised pizza and fast food a miss and give the street-food a go! Not only is it helping the local economy but it’s also tastes infinitely better.

#2 – London, UK

The opportunities are endless in London – one visit isn’t enough to uncover all the secrets of this city. Over 20.01 million people visited London last year and some had the chance to catch a glimpse of Big Ben before it went under restoration construction in summer 2017. Getting around the city is budget friendly with their highly effective public transport system which leaves you with more money in your pocket for your trip to Oxford Street. Whether you’re visiting for the architecture, history, to shop or to live like a local – London will leave you wanting more.

#3 – Paris, France

Whether you see Paris as the city of love or the city of lights, its charm was irresistible to over 16.13 million travellers in 2017. Known for it’s shopping and boutique restaurants – you’ll quickly fall in love with this city. Watch your wallet though! Over 44.8% of the total spend from tourists went towards a place to lay their head at night. A climb up the Eiffel tower or the Arc De Triomphe will give you a birds eye view of Paris while simultaneously giving you an excuse to indulge in another glass of wine and a macaroon.

#4 – Dubai, UAE

If you thought Dubai was at it’s peak – guess again. Each year the city grows, expands and outdoes itself in an effort to be bigger and better than ever before. With flying drone taxis, a replica of Venice and 2 new artificial islands in the works, it’s easy to see why 16.01 million people stopped over here in 2017 and spent over $28.50 billion in 2016. If gold bar vending machines, slick sports cars and a dash of culture is what you’re after – Dubai is your next stopover destination in 2018.

#5 – Singapore, Singapore

Singapore proudly boasts one of the biggest airports in the world – you’ll almost wish you were spending your holiday in there! There are indoor mazes, gardens, gaming rooms, cinemas and much more but what’s even more impressive is what’s outside the walls of Changi Airport. With Singapore’s location in Asia – you can see the influence of other countries in Singapore’s architecture, food and events. Sentosa Island is a great day trip for families or the young at heart alike with water parks and thrill rides all at your finger tips from the minute you step out of your hotel. Over 13.45 million travellers made their way to Singapore in 2017 to discover what it’s all about.

#6 – Tokyo, Japan

The bright and busy city of Tokyo was a must-see for over 12.51 million people in 2017! With the unique fashion, incredible food and the swiftness of the bullet trains – there’s no reason why you shouldn’t take a little stay in 2018. New air routes and museums are opening up left-right-and-centre in preparation for Tokyo hosting the 2020 Summer Olympics which makes this the best time to experience Japan. The energy is irreplaceable!

#7 – Seoul, South Korea

With Seoul quickly becoming a fashion and beauty capital with more spas and boutiques than you can poke a stick at – it’s a destination worth considering on your next overseas getaway.  Shop in trendy neighbourhoods until all hours of the night with the city staying up until sunrise. Ultimately, being a shopping destination, it isn’t a surprise that over 56.5% of the 12.44 million visitors in 2017 went out and broke the bank!

#8 – New York City, USA

New York is more than yellow taxis the bright lights in Times Square. With the hole in the wall coffee shops and restaurants tucked away, just waiting to be found – you’ll soon understand why this city is called the concrete jungle. There’s no place on earth bursting with the sheer energy that you’ll find while walking block after block through Midtown New York amongst the skyscrapers and street performers. With over 12.36 million travellers stopping through this city throughout 2017- it’s not surprising that they collectively spent over $17.02 billion during their time in the ‘Big Apple’.

#9 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

If street-food is on your radar – you’re definitely wanting to take a little time exploring the city of Kuala Lumpur. As a hub city to over 50 different airlines – it’s not surprising that people have decided to have a stay. You may be under the impression that this city is strictly a business destination – you couldn’t be more wrong! You’ll be surprised by the culture and experiences you’ll have during your stay in KL as last year, over 12.08 million people stayed here and 92.2% of those were in holiday mode!

#10 – Istanbul, Turkey

It’s been a rough year in the media for the city of Istanbul however that hasn’t stopped this magical city from making it into the top 10 visited city in 2017! With the magnificent architecture, traditional Turkish food that will leave you wanting more and the incredible kindness of the locals – you’ll never want to leave. It has been estimated that in 2017 over 9.24 million people visited this city for at least an overnight stay – if not longer! Take it from us, the sunrises in Istanbul are something that have to be seen to be believed.

Inspired to take a trip in 2018? Get in touch with the Anywhere Travel team and we can make it happen!

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