UK’s industrial cities attract increasing tourist numbers

Hotel News - 12/07/2010

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With an average of 15 million international visitors a year over the last four years, London easily remains the number-one city for tourists visiting the UK. However, that’s where the obvious ranking ends, as some of the UK’s big industrial cities have begun to challenge the former obvious choices.

Cities like Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow are increasingly seen as hip and trendy, with more and more visitors attracted to the notable architecture, expanding arts scenes, burgeoning cultural events and world-class sports found in many of these cities that used to be seen only as dark and dirty.

A survey by VisitBritain, the UK’s national tourism agency, showed the inroads Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow have made into the international tourism industry. The figures are based on a survey of tourists from overseas who stayed overnight in British cities between the years 2006 and 2009.

With an average of 15 million visitors every year, London remains by far the biggest destination. Edinburgh, with 1.3 million, is in second place, but this once solid position is being attacked by a rather unlikely challenger. Manchester saw some 900,000 visitors from abroad. Birmingham had more than 730,000 visitors. Almost 690,000 international tourists visited Glasgow.

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