Israel welcomes over 3 million visitors breaking tourism records
The Israeli tourism industry continues to smash old records well into 2017. In the first 10 months of this year approximately 3.2 million visitors came to Israel. This represents a 27% increase from the same period in 2016.
The above figures are even more impressive considering the fact that 2016 itself was a record breaking year for tourism. Even before the end of 2017 Israel has seen more visitors than came during all of last year.
One reason for the increase in visitors is due to more cruise ships visiting Israeli ports. Although the day trippers do not stay overnight in an Israeli hotel they still frequent local businesses and restaurants.
The top 2 originating countries where tourists come to Israel are the United States and Russia. Most of the US tourists are coming on religious pilgrimages or are American Jews touring Israel with their families or young people coming as part of a Birthright Israel trip. As for Russia, many of the visitors are family of the estimated 1 million Israeli citizens of Russian heritage.
Tourism was also up in from a variety of other countries including China, Germany, Poland, Romania, Italy, Ukraine, UK, and France.