How Many People Visit Peru Each Year?

Peru Tourism Statistics and Visitor Numbers

Tourists at Machu Picchu in 2015
••• Tourist crowds at Machu Picchu in 2015. Tony Dunnell

The number of foreign tourists visiting Peru each year has increased dramatically during the last 15 years. Machu Picchu has obviously been a significant long-term attraction, while the development of other important and spectacular sites throughout the country, along with an increase in the overall standards of the tourism infrastructure in Peru, has helped ensure a consistent rise in foreign arrivals.

Number of Foreign Tourists Visiting Peru Each Year Since 1995

As you can see from the table below, the number of foreign tourists visiting Peru each year has grown from less than half a million in 1995 to almost three million in 2012. With the exception of 1999, tourist arrivals have increased every year since 1995.

The figures below represent the total number of international tourists each year, which in this case includes foreign tourists and Peruvian tourists residing abroad.

Year      Arrivals
1995      479,000
1996      584,000
1997      649,000
1998      726,000
1999      694,000
2000      800,000
2001      901,000
2002      1,064,000
2003      1,136,000
2004      1,350,000
2005      1,571,000
2006      1,721,000
2007      1,916,000
2008      2,058,000
2009      2,140,000
2010      2,299,000
2011      2,598,000
2012      2,846,000
2013      3,164,000
2014      3,215,000

According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), “The Americas welcomed 163 million international tourists in 2012, up 7 million (+5%) on the previous year.” In South America, Venezuela (+19%), Chile (+13%), Ecuador (+11%), Paraguay (+11%) and Peru (+10%) all reported double-digit growth.

In terms of international tourist arrivals, Peru was the fourth most popular country in South America in 2012, behind Brazil (5.7 million), Argentina (5.6 million) and Chile (3.6 million).

Peru reached three million visitors for the first time in 2013 and continued to increase in 2014. That number looks set to rise once again for 2015.

The Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism of Peru (MINCETUR) hopes to receive 5.1 million foreign tourists in 2021. The long-term plan aims to make tourism the second largest source of foreign currency in Peru (it is currently the third), generating a projected US$6,852 million in expenditures by international inbound visitors and approximately 1.3 million jobs in Peru (in 2011, Peru’s international tourism receipts totalled US$2,912 million).