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Abu Dhabi celebrates record-breaking visitor numbers in 2017

Visitor numbers to Abu Dhabi soared in 2017, with a record-breaking 4.785 million travellers staying in the Emirate. This was a 9.8 percent increase compared to the previous year, according to the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, and in Abu Dhabi city, there was 10.3 percent increase in visitors staying in its 131 hotels and apartments.

Abu Dhabi celebrates record-breaking visitor numbers in 2017

Abu Dhabi celebrated record-breaking visitor arrivals in 2017, with more than 4.875 million people staying in the emirate’s 162 hotels and hotel apartments. According to Abu Dhabi’s Department of Culture and Tourism (DCT), the numbers are a 9.8 per cent increase compared to the previous year.

In Abu Dhabi city, visitor arrivals rose by 10.3 per cent, with 295,030 travellers staying in the city’s 131 hotels and hotel apartments which provide a total of 26,821 guest rooms. In the Al Ain Region, there was a 5.5 per cent increase with 450,328 guests staying in its 20 hotels, and in the Al Dhafra Region, visitors increased by 8.2 per cent with130,180 guests staying at its 11 hotels and hotel apartments.

Saif Saeed Ghobash, the Director General of Department of Culture and Tourism, explained: 

“Record numbers of people are visiting Abu Dhabi year after year and we continue to go from strength to strength in positioning ourselves as a distinctive global tourist destination steeped in culture and heritage. A near double digit year-on-year growth in the number of guests staying in all three regions of the emirate is a testament to our drive and determination in helping the emirate evolve into a "must-visit" place on any traveller’s itinerary.”

Ghobash added:

“Abu Dhabi’s unique cultural archetypes, combined with diverse natural landscapes, cultural and historic sites, dynamic family-leisure entertainment and ambitious business opportunities, will continue to stimulate visitation and help us grow by 11 per cent per annum to achieve 8.5 million visitors by 2021.”

Last year, the top overseas source market for Abu Dhabi was China, with more than 372,000 visitors. This was followed by India, with more than 360,000 visitors recorded over the past 12 months, which was up by 11 per cent compared to 2016. The main European source market continued to be the United Kingdom with over 270,00 travellers, and an increase of 13 per cent.

Tourism numbers in Abu Dhabi are expected to increase over the next few years, with the help of the opening of new attractions, hotels and airport terminals. The Louvre Abu Dhabi opened to guests last November, and new attractions including the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi and the Zayed National Museum will open in the couple of years. In 2019, the new Midfield Terminal will open at Abu Dhabi International Airport.

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