ITB 2018

Abu Dhabi builds big for its future

Good tourism growth for Gulf emirate

March 12, 2018
Cultural attractions are drawing more international tourists to Abu Dhabi.
Photo: Marco Limberg

A new branch of the Louvre is the latest in a series of major tourism-related developments in Abu Dhabi. The gallery opened in November 2017 and already draws 5,000 visitors daily. This cultural attraction will be followed next year by the opening of the world’s largest airport terminal under one roof.

Abu Dhabi tourism chiefs said 2018 has got off to a flying start, with bookings up 22 per cent. The Gulf emirate has seen good tourism growth in recent years. Abu Dhabi welcomed nearly 4.9 million tourists in 2017, a rise of close to ten per cent on the more than 4.4 million international arrivals registered in 2016. The emirate had already enjoyed double-digit growth from 2013 through to 2015.

Germany is the emirate’s largest source market in terms of overnight stays, with some 615,000 overnights registered in 2017. About 135,000 Germans visited Abu Dhabi last year, staying five nights on average. The German market grew rapidly between 2013 and 2015 taking arrivals to over 148,000 in 2015, although it has slowed in the last two years.

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