In 66 countries of the world there are more tourists than residents: where you shouldn’t go if you don’t like crowds
Tourists, if you rely on them to make a living, they are wonderful people. But for everyone else, they can be quite tedious. Tourists slowly walk along the sidewalk, looking at Google Maps trying to find their way. They inexplicably stop in doorways, not paying attention to the traffic jam they have created. With their wheeled suitcases they cause bruises on the legs of pedestrians. Tourists occupy the last available table in your favorite restaurant. They willingly spend time in places like Madame Tussauds, ride in stupid open-top buses with a camera in their hands with an indifferent expression on their faces. If you don't want to crowd with tourists, you can find countries where there are fewer of them. The publication told in more detail Telegraph.
Think about the good people of Andorra. This is a small landlocked principality with an area of 181 square meters. mile (468 sq. km), home to 83 people, receives more than 523 million foreign tourists annually, meaning (according to UNWTO statistics for 3, the last "normal" year for travel) it is the country with the most tourists per capita population. For every local just trying to mind their own business, there are 2019 tourists.
It is one of 66 countries where the number of tourists annually exceeds the number of inhabitants, with the majority of these being small states (such as Monaco and Malta) and tropical islands (Aruba, Anguilla and Palau). However, several larger states were also included in the list.
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Croatia, with 17,35 million tourists and 3,89 million locals, has a ratio of 4,463:1, placing it 19th on the list. In Austria, Greece, Denmark, Portugal and the UAE, the annual number of tourists is more than twice the number of local residents. In the UK, with 67,03 million citizens and 39,42 million annual visitors, the ratio is slightly more acceptable - 1:0,588.
See the full table at link.
One might assume that Andorra's position at the top of the tourism table is due to its tax haven status, and indeed many residents of neighboring France and Spain flock to its rather seedy capital, Andorra la Vella, in search of cheap luxuries, electronics and cigarettes. But the data only applies to tourists, so it seems that Andorra deserves its first place.
Andorra is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, as it consists almost entirely of mountains. In winter, people in tacky outfits flock to three ski areas: Grandvalira, Ordino Arcaliz and Pal-Arinsal. In summer, hikers and cyclists conquer the same peaks. Traditional mountain restaurants offer hearty food, and one of Europe's largest thermal spas, Caldea, is the ideal place for a wellness rubdown.
If you tweak the calculations a little, a new “winner” will emerge. Andorra may have the most tourists per capita, but at least the locals have 181 sq. mile (468 sq km) of mountains to which they can escape. Macau, on the other hand, is only 11 square meters in area. miles (28,4 sq. km). However, in 2019, it received 18,63 million tourists, allowing this special administrative region of China to receive more tourists per square mile than any other place on the planet - 1,69 million people to be exact.
Many come here with only one purpose: to earn money. Macau is a casino hub, the Monte Carlo of the Orient, where half of its GDP comes from gambling. With gambling banned throughout China, Macau is an irresistible attraction for tourists from both the mainland and Hong Kong. Moreover, gambling revenues here exceed even those of Las Vegas.
What about the Vatican?
UNWTO does not have data on arrivals to this micronation as it is not possible to stay overnight here. Therefore, the Vatican does not appear in the ranking. But yes, if day tourists were counted here, it would undoubtedly take first place.
Only 764 permanent residents live here, the area is only 0,2 square meters. miles (0,5 sq. km), and the number of visitors, according to some sources, is 6 million people per year. That's 7 tourists per resident or 853 million people per square mile.
The least visited country in the world by tourists
At the other end of the scale is Bangladesh. The country has a population of 169,8 million and an annual visitor count of just 323, a rate of just 0,002 tourists per resident per year, possibly making it the least visited country on Earth.
According to Alistair and Jill Campbell, travel writers who have visited this country many times, we are missing out.
“We travel by the millions to neighboring India, but if you say you are planning a trip to Bangladesh, you will be greeted with stunned disbelief,” they noted. “Bangladesh is in the newspapers when there is bad news like floods, but its stable economic growth and stable government are barely mentioned.”
“Despite direct flights from the UK, low prices for ground transport and a large number of interesting sites (tigers and rare dolphins, ancient mosques and temples, colorful bazaars, floating markets and hills covered with tea bushes), there are very few tourism companies in Bangladesh. It will never become mainstream, and that’s probably its charm. Bangladesh is small, special and endlessly amazing,” the Campbells explained.
Other underrated places
When it comes to the number of tourists per square mile, Chad tops the table. Its area is 486 square meters. miles (180 million sq. km), but in 1,2 it received only 2019 visitors, or 79 per sq. km. mile. Attractions include the moon-shaped Tibesti Mountains, the monolith-lined Ennedi Plateau and Zakouma National Park.
Of more obvious interest is Brazil, a land of samba rhythms, winding rivers and sandy beaches. Underrated? Of course not. However, according to the data, it receives only 6,35 million tourists per year - that's 1,94 per square mile (180th out of 191 countries) and 0,031 per capita (172nd).
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In recent years, Brazil has made efforts to address untapped potential by lifting visa restrictions on tourists from the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan, but a lack of cheap flights continues to constrain the country's economic growth.
Chris Moss, Telegraph Travel's South America expert, highlights another factor: a lack of self-promotion.
“Brazil is generally blind to non-Brazilian news and culture,” he explained. “The country is the size of a continent, it is somewhat insular and notorious for not investing enough in tourism development. She has never promoted anything other than Rio de Janeiro and, more recently, the Pantanal. It’s a shame, because it’s an amazingly diverse country. In Sao Paulo, the art and architecture simply amazed me. But no one goes there!”
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