Asia and Africa enjoy tourism boom

21st Sep 2012

The continent of Asia saw biggest increase in worldwide tourists during the first half of this year, according to global figures.

Asia saw an 8% rise in tourist numbers between January and June compared to figures for the same period in 2011, the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) revealed.

Africa also saw a strong jump in travellers compared to last year, with a 7% increase during the first half of 2012.

This comes as UNWTO figures suggest the number of worldwide tourists is set to soar above one billion for the first time this year.

Last year's total number of international travellers reached 982 million.

But with a record 467 million tourists already heading overseas in the first half of the year, figures suggest the one billion mark will be surpassed for the first time in 2012.

July and August are traditionally the strongest months for international tourism.

John Kester of UNWTO said: "You don't have an even spread throughout the year. In a normal year, the first six months account for a total volume of 45% of the year."

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