The Office for National Statistics figures show visits from January to March were up six per cent on the same period last year to 7.36 million, with visitors spending £3.64 billion.
Strong growth was seen in particular from EU countries with 5.27 million visits, up seven per cent on the first three months of 2015 and setting a record first quarter.
Visits from North America, one of the UK’s most valuable inbound markets, were also up seven per cent compared to the same period last year. In March alone, visits were up 12 per cent.
Last year set a record for inbound tourism to Britain on visits and spend with 36.1 million visits, five per cent up on 2014, and spending up one per cent to £22.1 billion.
Comparing growth during the last five years shows that there were six million more visits in 2015 than 2010, an increase of more than 20 per cent.
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