Travel to Australia was big in 2016.
According to Tourism Australia officials, the country received an estimated 8.3 million international visitors last year—an increase of 11%. Arrivals from the United States rose by 16%.
The most tourists came from nearby New Zealand, followed by China, the U.K., and the U.S., in that order.
If we were going to speculate on reasons for the spike in visits—at least the ones from Americans—we'd guess it has something to do with Australia's reputation for stability and security, which would appeal especially to travelers concerned about terror attacks in Europe and elsewhere. Australia's exciting cities, friendly populace, and unparalleled natural attractions certainly don't hurt either.
At Sydney's Australia Tourism Exchange event this week, officials said their efforts to keep the visits coming will focus on the country's coastal attractions and culinary scene.