The number of travelers that criss-crossed the globe increased by 52 million in 2013. International tourist arrivals grew 5 percent to reach a record 1.087 billion, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization.
Although the world's most visited countries — led by France, the U.S. and China — remained relatively unchanged, several destinations reported significant increases in international tourists.
Japan experienced the greatest growth with a 24 percent spike in international visitors in 2013. Japan crossed the 10 million visitor milestone for the first time last year due to the weakened yen and a renewed focus on tourism promotion. The country spent the past two years building up its tourism industry after a earthquake and tsunami hit in 2011.
Other Asian countries including Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam also reported a more than 10 percent increase in arrivals. These statistics mirror the six percent increase in international tourist arrivals throughout all of Asia.
One of the most surprising up-and-coming destinations is Kazakhstan. The Central Asian country reported a 22 percent increase in arrivals last year.
This is likely due in part to the rising number of tourists coming out of nearby China and Russia. Outbound tourism expenditures from each country grew between 26 percent and 28 percent in the first nine months of 2013.
The 10 fastest growing tourism destinations of 2013 are listed below:
More from Skift...
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How a degree from Duke University dashed my dreams of buying a home
- This is why you can't trust the NSA. Ever.
- Innocent before proven guilty? The bizarre bipartisan rush to clear Rick Perry
- How collaborative innovation led to the experimental serum for Ebola
- Why you should stop believing in evolution
- ISIS and the echoes of the West's religious terror
- Don't listen to Paul Ryan: The GOP is still the party of makers and takers
- 10 things you need to know today: August 22, 2014
- 4 things NASA can teach you about a good night's sleep
- 7 grammar rules you really should pay attention to
Subscribe to the Week