Dominican Republic Draws 4 Million Visitors in 2010

El Carnaval de La Vega, taken by Edwin Casado BaezThe Dominican Republic (DR) Ministry of Tourism reported the country saw upward of 4 million visitors in 2010, a new record for the Caribbean nation and a 3.3 percent increase compared to 2009. The Central Bank of the Dominican Republic announced that 91 percent of tourists visited the Dominican Republic for leisure travel and stayed in the country's top hotels and resorts.

The United States is the country's largest tourism market, with more than one million U.S. visitors deciding upon the Caribbean's second largest island nation for six consecutive years. In 2010, the number of visitors rose by 83,022 (54 percent) from North America, compared to the previous year.

Leisure visits from South America also increased by 67,463 people in 2010, according to the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic, including visitors from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Central America and the Caribbean.

Punta Cana on the country's East Coast has continued to be the most popular destination for visitors, receiving 57 percent of all the arrivals into its international airport in 2010. Las Americas International Airport in the capital city, Santo Domingo, was the second most visited airport with 22 percent of arrivals. Puerto Plata International Airport followed at third place, with 11 percent, known for its ecotourism on the North Coast.



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