The popularity of Iceland has just continued to grow in recent years, and now the country has more international American tourists than actual citizens. The total population of the country is 332,000 people, and by the end of September they saw 325,522 American tourists. By the end of the year the number of tourists will surpass the citizens.
The amount of American tourists that the country has seen has been steadily rising, but that number literally doubled in amount since 2014.
Part of the increase is thanks to Icelandair’s free stopover program, which makes it easy for people to stop there on their way to Europe. Then there’s also been the increase of pop culture in Iceland which always boosts interest. A lot of the third season of Game of Thrones was shot there, and this year the highly influential Kardashian family shot an episode of their show there as well.
The massive influx in tourism from all over the world is requiring that Iceland step up their hospitality industry, as well as make sure that they have practices in place for protecting the nature there. The government has begun a nine-year tourism plan to do so.
“The development of tourism infrastructure shall aim at protecting nature, and the tourism strategy shall aim at incorporating the concepts of sustainability and responsibility for Iceland’s culture and natural surroundings.”