British Museum most popular visitor attraction in UK

Visitor AttractionWhile many Brits are thinking about getting away from it all on their own holidays this year, inbound tourism continues to make an important contribution to the country's economy.

Now, new figures from the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA) show that visitors to the UK increased last year and the British Museum held on to its position as the top tourism spot.


2015 saw an average increase of 1.61% year on year to London attractions, while attractions in Scotland actually had a rise of 5.48% in visitor numbers. All in all, the total visits to the top 230 ALVA sites last year came in at 124.4 million, of which 65,218,272 were to attractions in London.

For the ninth year running the British Museum was named as the most popular visitor attraction with 6,820,686 visitors, while the National Gallery claimed second place with 5,908,254 visitors.

Another iconic British attraction, London's Natural History Museum, was in third place with 5,284,023 visitors.

However, Somerset House had the biggest rise in visitor numbers out of all the top ten attractions with an increase of 31% on 2014, notching up a total of 3,235,104 visitors which earned it eighth place in the list.

A record year

The Director of ALVA, Bernard Donoghue, said: “2015 continued to be a record year mainly due to our members continuing to show how diverse the UK is to both domestic and overseas visitors.

“More people visited the V&A, the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum, combined, than visited Venice.”

Other favourable comparisons include the fact that more people visited the British Museum and the National Gallery combined than visited the Catalan capital city of Barcelona, in Spain. Adding together the visitor numbers for the Southbank Centre, Tate Modern and Tate Britain makes a total for the year that exceeds the number of people who visited Hong Kong over the same period.

Whether you plan a staycation or a trip abroad this year, don't forget to make sure you're fully covered with Family Travel Insurance.

Date Created: 08 March 2016

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