107.8 million visitors called on museums worldwide in 2016.
The Themed Entertainment Association and AECOM released the 2016 museums attendance index in June this year. The statistical analysis showed that museum attendance was up in 2016 by 1.2% accounting for a 1.3 million increase in visitation.
Museums in Asia, Europe, North America dominated the list without a single spot allowed for Africa, South America, and Australia.
The top three saw visitations north of 7 million with the National Museum of China -which is first on the list – attracting 7.6 million attenders, 7.5 million visitors were pulled by the National Air and Space Museum, Washington while the Louvre welcomed 7.4 million guests.
The cities of London and Washington snatched four spots from the list and have been consequently named world museum capitals.
Bagging the visits for London were the British Museum with 6.4 million callers at 6th place, The National Gallery welcoming 6.2 million people ranking 8th, Tate Modern with 5.8 million at number 10 and Natural History Museum collecting 4.6 million visitors in 13th place.
Listed museums in Washington included
The National Air and Space Museum – 7.5 Million – 2nd place
The National Museum of Natural History – 7.1 million visitors – 4th place
The National Gallery of Art – 4.3 million – 14th place and
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History -3.8 million – 17th place
Beijing, New York, and Paris are other cities with multiple (two) entries.
Surprises included the drop of the Louvre in Paris to third place from first – a spot it has occupied for a record four consecutive years since 2012 – suffering a 15% reduction in visitation which could be attributed to the general dip in Paris tourism. The other Paris museum on the list, the Centre Pompidou, however, enjoyed a 6% visitor increment from 2015 to rank itself 20th with 3.3 million visitors.
Other listed museums include:
- Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York – 6.7 million
- The Shanghai Science and Technology Museum – 6.3 million
- The Vatican Museums – 6 million
- The American Museum of Natural History, New York – 5 million
- The National Palace Museum in Taipei, Taiwan – 4.7 million
- The State Hermitage Museum, St.Petersburg, Russia – 4.1 million
- The China Science Technology Museum, Beijing – 3.8 million
- The Reina Sofía in Madrid, Spain – 3.6 million
- The National Museum of Korea in Seoul – 3.4 million