London remains top global destination

The Jubilee and the Olympic Games are making London the world’s hottest destination this year, according to a new study.

An index produced by credit card company MasterCard concludes that the UK capital will attract 16.9 million air passengers – a million more than are expected to travel to Paris.

“London offers better value for money than New York,” MasterCard Worldwide’s global economic advisor Yuwa Hedrick-Wong told Reuters.

The study also revealed that London remains top in terms of international visitor spend, with tourists set to outlay $21.1 million this year, ahead of New York with an estimated $19.4 million.

“As our fantastic Diamond Jubilee celebrations demonstrated, London knows how to throw a party and, as we prepare to host the greatest Games the world has ever seen, it is no surprise our capital is the top choice for tourists,” said London’s mayor Boris Johnson.

MasterCard compiled the information using data from 87 airlines, national tourism boards and the United Nations.

As well as the Olympics, the UK capital also offers a whole host of attractions for those taking advantage of London hotel deals. Visitors staying in central locations are in easy reach of top landmarks such as Buckingham Palace, the London Eye and the Tower of London. There is also a whole host of day-trip opportunities including a cruise along the River Thames or an open-topped bus tour of the city’s famous streets.

London also boasts a large number of some of the world’s leading museums and art galleries. The Tate Modern, situated on the South Bank, has an impressive collection of art, while the British Museum has a catalogue that includes the Rosetta Stone and the Parthenon sculptures.

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