MORE than 190,000, Tanzanians visited Kenya for vacation last year.
The Kenya Tourism Sector Performance Report 2019 released last week puts the number of Tanzanians who toured the East African neighbour at 193,740.
Tanzania made it in the top three, only coming behind Uganda which had 223,010 of its residents visiting Kenya while the United States of America commanded the largest share of visitors at 245,437.
Released by the country's National Bureau of Statistics, the sector performance report reveals that out of the 2,048,334 international visitors that toured the country last year, 1,423, 971 landed in Nairobi while another 128,222 pitched camp in the coastal city of Mombasa.
"At least 29,462 visitors arrived at other airports and 467,179 visitors arrived by land," says the report. According to the Tourism Sector Performance report, US remains the largest western tourism source country for the East African neighbour followed by the United Kingdom, India, China, Germany, France and Italy.
Rwanda, another East African nation, is at number 11 with 42,321 of its people visiting Kenya last year. Burundi is at position 17 with 31,218 visitors while South Sudan closes the top 20 table with 24,646 visitors.
According to East Africa Tourism Platform (EATP), the EAC remains a leading tourist destination in Sub Sahara Africa.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, Eastern Africa Sub-region Office (UNECASRO-EA) in its report "Towards a Sustainable Tourism Industry in Eastern Africa- a Study on the Challenges and Opportunities for Tourism Development" says that tourism economic prospects for the region remain high should there be a conducive policy and regulatory framework and the removal of uncertainties in the business environment which do little to encourage investment.
The report also advocates for the sound marketing strategies and discourages overreliance on traditional source markets.
Growth and expansion of tourism sector in East Africa necessitate the importance of having a competitive destination.
East African countries have recorded some impressive achievements in the realm of tourism owing to the conscious efforts by EAC partner states to work together in promoting growth in the sector.
The success of the tourism sector has benefited from immense private sector investments in hotels, transportation, marketing and product development and dedicated government efforts in conservation.
Since November 2008, the EAC has been marketed as a single region and the EAC partner states have been participating in international tourism fairs, including World Tourism Market (WTM) in London, UK and Internationale TourismusBörse (ITB) Berlin.