People, Travel

Paris Tourism Rebounding

Tourism increased by nearly  20% last year.Tourism increased by nearly  20% last year.

After a dramatic downturn in visitors to the French capital over the past two years, Paris attracted as many tourists at the end of 2016 as it did before the wave of deadly terrorist attacks that hit the City of Lights.

Tourism increased by nearly 20% last year, returning to pre-terrorism levels, according to figures by the French capital’s official tourism office, France24 reported.

Tourism was one of the collateral victims of terrorist attacks that devastated the city, starting in January 2015 with the deadly Charlie Hebdo shooting. Terrorism shattered the city in November 2015 when gunmen attacked Paris restaurants, the Bataclan concert hall and the Stade de France sports arena on the outskirts of the city.

French nationals, especially business travelers, are largely responsible for the increase, data showed. But international visitors are also coming back in record numbers.

Despite the understandable dip in the wake of the violence, tourism from the United States and China has now even surpassed the levels seen before the attacks. Visits from the US rose by 25% and from China by 41%, the data for 2016 showed.

 “There have never been so many American and Chinese people checking into hotels in the Paris region,” the Paris tourism office said. Tourism officials, nevertheless, admitted they were struggling to win back certain nationalities. There were 35% fewer tourists from Italy and more than 50% less from Japan, as compared to pre-attack levels.


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