Report: Mexico City a rising tourism star

The newest list of North and Latin America travel hotspots is in — and it seems Mexico City tops the charts.

According to the folks over at, Mexico City experienced a 58 percent increase in tourists in 2009 over 2008– making it the fastest-growing travel destination. Other up-and-coming Latin American destinations include
Mariachi capital Guadalajara, Mexico (really?); cheap travel destination San Jose, Costa Rica; and Guatemala City, Guatemala, which filled out the remaining top four spots.

Los Angeles, CA; San Jose, CA; and Syracuse, NY experienced a zero increase in tourist visits, while around 80 cities, including Philadelphia, PA; Atlanta, GA and Washington, D.C., all saw a decrease in visits. The increase in foreign travel and decrease in domestic U.S. vacation getaways could speak to an increase in overall travel spending.

One surprise on the list? Despite a ubiquitous marketing campaign, Las Vegas saw a whopping -19 percent downturn in visitors in 2009. Perhaps what happens in Vegas … has lost its thrill for travelers.

[Photo by Flickr user gripso_banana_prune ]