London welcomed more international visitors than ever before in 2014, with the city’s cultural attractions and world class sporting events proving irresistible draws for millions, according to new figures released by the Office for National Statistics International Passenger Survey.
The new figures show there were 17.4 million visits to the city in 2014 up 3.5 per cent from the previous record of 16.8million visits in 2013.
The surge in visitors since the 2012 Olympic Games has been welcomed by businesses as international visitors are spending more in the city’s restaurants, hotels and attractions than ever before.
In 2014 visitors boosted London’s economy by £11.8 billion compared to £11.5 billion in 2013, an increase of three per cent.
The city proved to be one of the world’s biggest tourist magnets with a diverse and eclectic mix of blockbuster exhibitions and events, including Henri Matisse: The Cut Outs at the Tate Modern, Ming: 50 years that Changed China at the British Museum, Anselm Kiefer at the Royal Academy, Sherlock Holmes at the Museum of London, the Frieze Art Fair, the Tour de France Grand Départ, Wimbledon Tennis Champion- ships and the Chelsea Flower Show, encouraging people to visit from all over the world