Let’s face it, the world is a gigantic place. There are countless places to visit and things to see — and as air travel has become easier, more affordable (kinda) and spread out, humans are crisscrossing the globe more than ever before.
MasterCard has released its annual list of the top-ranked international travel destinations, and it illustrates the diversity of locales we humans have the opportunity to visit. In 2014, approximately three billion air passengers (an insane number) flew on commercial airlines.
Bringing the need for business travel into the equation, it’s not surprising that certain metro areas made the top 20 most-visited cities in the world. Canada wasn’t even close to cracking the top 20 (as you’ll see), with Toronto the closest at 3.8 million overnight visitors, Vancouver at 3.4 million, and Montreal at 2 million.
Here are the top 20 most-visited cities in the world:
The 20 most popular travel destinations on the planet
Lima, Peru20. The South American city had 5.11 million visitors in 2015.All photos Getty Images
Tokyo, Japan19. The Japanese capital had 5.38 million visitors in 2014.
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia18. In 2014, 5.59 million visitors went to Riyadh.
Vienna, Austria17. The beautiful Austrian city had 6.04 million visitors in 2014.
Shanghai, China16. Edging out Vienna, Shanghai had 6.09 million visitors in 2014.
Taipei, Taiwan15. The capital of Taiwan, Taipei City received 6.29 million visitors in 2014.
Rome, Italy14. This heavy tourism city had 6.79 million visitors in 2014.
Milan, Italy13. Coming in close to its neighbour, Milan just beat Rome with 6.82 million visitors in 2014.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands12. This canal city had 7.23 million visitors in 2014.
Barcelona, Spain11. This jam-packed gorgeous city had 7.37 million visitors in 2014.
Seoul, South Korea10. The South Korean capital received 8.63 million visitors in 2014.
Hong Kong, China9. Hong Kong is always bustling, so no surprise it had 8.84 million visitors last year.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia8. This Malaysian hub received 10.81 million people in 2014.
Istanbul, Turkey7. This huge city of multiple religious denominations brought in 11.60 million tourists last year.
New York City, United States6. The Big Apple had to be on this list. It made the top 10 with 11.81 visitors in 2014.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates5. This desert city is just growing and growing, so it's no surprise it made the top 5 with 11.95 visitors in 2014.
Singapore4. This hub had 12.47 million visitors in 2014.
Paris, France3. Tourism is alive and well in Paris; it brought in 15.57 million tourists last year.
Bangkok, Thailand2. This bustling metropolis brings in big business and big tourism dollars. Last year it had 16.42 million visitors.
London, England1. That London is tops on this list isn't really a shock. The European city had a staggering 18.69 million tourists last year.