A record 1.6 million tourists visited Israel in the first half of 2010, up 39% compared with the first half of 2009 and up 10% compared with the first half of 2008 – the previous record. Like previous months, tourism in June also set a new record with 259,000 tourists visiting, up 24% from 2009 and 8% from June 2008.
The New York-based Travel and Leisure magazine named Jerusalem as the best city in Africa and the Middle East. Readers of the magazine were asked to respond to a questionnaire which ranked cities according to sights, culture and arts, restaurants and food, people, shopping and value. This was the first time that the city received such a ranking since 2000. Cape Town was ranked in second place and Tel Aviv in third place.