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These Are The Top 10 Most Popular Cities To Visit In The World Right Now 

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With winter surrounding us many people are thinking about escaping and making 2024 travel plans.  

The world is a vast and diverse place which means choosing the perfect vacation destination can be overwhelming.

Not sure where to go next? Why not look to the world’s most popular destinations?  

Woman standing on a street in Paris

Destinations are popular for a reason!  

Whether you’re looking for cultural activities, historical landmarks, or a charming atmosphere, the most popular cities will have it all.  

These are the top 10 most popular cities to visit in the world right now: 

5. Amsterdam, The Netherlands 

Amsterdam is a unique city built on water. First constructed during the 17th century, the Amsterdam canal ring is one of the most unique urban landscapes in the world. Take a canal boat tour or join the locals who whizz around the city on bicycles. 

Amsterdam is famous for its fascinating museums. The Van Gogh Museum, Rembrandt House Museum, and Stedelijk Art Gallery are all within walking distance of each other.  

Brouwersgracht in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

And no trip to Amsterdam would be complete without a visit to the Anne Frank House, a museum telling the story of the Jewish diarist. 

Amsterdam welcomes a whopping 8.8 million visitors each year and the city is so busy with tourists during the peak season that cruise ships and their huge number of passengers are no longer welcome in the city.  

Consider visiting Amsterdam during the shoulder seasons of spring or fall if you want to enjoy everything this stunning city has to offer without the overwhelming crowds.  

4. Tokyo, Japan 

Japan has had an exceptional year for tourism, with travelers keen to return to the country since they opened their borders post-covid. And the capital of Tokyo is the most popular place to be.  

Tokyo is a fascinating city because it delicately balances historical buildings with modern and futuristic architecture. Its blend of art, architecture, and theme parks adds to the diversity of the destination.  

skyline of Downtown Tokyo, with the famous landmark Tokyo Tower

Some of the best not-to-be-missed attractions in Tokyo include climbing to the top of the Tokyo Tower, walking across the Shibuya Crossing, or exploring the unique fashions in the Harajuku district.

When it's time for a rest, head to one of the many themed cafes and restaurants that the city is so famous for.

3. Madrid, Spain 

The 3rd most popular city in the world is Madrid in Spain. Madrid is a popular city destination because it's so diverse, and it offers something for everyone.  

Whether you're looking for a cultural, historic, or foodie experience, you will find it in Madrid. Madrid is attractive because it is a less crowded, more affordable alternative to Barcelona.  

Cibeles Fountain Town Square, Madrid, Spain

Highlights of the city include The Prado, The Reina Sofia, and the Thyssen-Bornemisza, which are 3 of the best art galleries in Spain.  

The stunning Royal Palace is an iconic destination, and if you want to people-watch and explore the bustling heart of the city, then take a stroll along the Gran Vía.  

Madrid is an easy city to explore on foot and a great place to experience the authentic heart of Spanish culture.  

2. Dubai 

Though it is by far the most modern city on this list, Dubai is still a rich and culturally fascinating city.  

Dubai is most famous for its stunning architecture, fancy hotels, shopping festivals, and majestic skyscrapers. It is a city soaked in luxury and has undergone a huge transformation to become the 2nd most popular city in the world.  

Infinity Pool Overlooking Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Visit the Burj Khalifa which is the tallest man-made structure on earth or head down to the marina. These are both great places to enjoy incredible city views. Adventurers can hit the desert dunes on safaris, enjoy water parks, theme parks, and aquariums.  

Dubai is a city for city lovers. From skyscrapers to cityscapes, if you’re a fan of sprawling urban jungles then there’s nowhere better to be.  

1. Paris, France 

Paris is not only the top city in Europe but also the top city in the world. Paris is a diverse and sophisticated city packed full of iconic landmarks.  

Of course, the Eiffel Tower and Louvre are the most famous, but other not-to-be-missed attractions for first-time visitors to Paris include the Sacré-Cœur Basilica, The Arc de Triomphe, and the Pompidou Center.

Gorgeous sunset over Notre Dame cathedral with puffy clouds, Paris, France

The Notre Dame Cathedral will reopen in December 2024 after being closed for 5 years due to a devastating fire. This is a good reason to consider a winter visit to the City of Lights which really comes alive when it's cold outside and when the tourist crowd levels are lower.  

Sports fans might want to consider visiting Paris in July and August when the city will be hosting the Summer Olympics games and the city will be full of excitement, sports fans, and sporting events. 

The Complete Top 10 List  

The list of the top 10 most popular cities in the world to visit right now was taken from Euromonitor International’s Top 100 City Destinations Index 2023.

People walking along a street in Paris

This study looked at tourist attractiveness, tourism infrastructure, and tourism policy amongst other metrics.  

The complete top 10 list is:  

  1. Paris, France  
  2. Dubai 
  3. Madrid, Spain 
  4. Tokyo, Japan 
  5. Amsterdam, The Netherlands  
  6. Berlin, Germany 
  7. Rome, Italy 
  8. New York, New York 
  9. Barcelona, Spain  
  10. London, UK 

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