Malaysia is the top tourist destination in southeast Asia. About 21 million foreign visitors spent $14 billion in Malaysia in 2007. West Malaysia, which is part of the Asian mainland, includes the capital and is more economically developed. East Malaysia encompasses the northern third of the island of Borneo and includes more-secluded resort areas.
Thailand has the second largest tourism industry in southeast Asia. About 14.5 million foreign visitors spent $15.6 billion in Thailand in 2007. Major attractions include world-class diving and watersports, archeological and religious sites, and diverse tropical flora and fauna.
Singapore has the third largest tourism industry in southeast Asia. About 8 million foreign visitors spent $8.7 billion in Singapore in 2007. Much of the attraction is because of the dominance of English usage and the cultural diversity of Chinese, Malay, Indian, Arabic and British influences.
About 5.5 million foreign visitors spent $5.3 billion in Indonesia in 2007. The primary attractions are beach resorts and hotels in secluded island settings, and cultural tourism rooted in both Hindu and Islamic traditions.
About 4.2 million foreign visitors spent $3.5 billion in Vietnam in 2007. Tourism in Vietnam is dominated by visitors to the resorts and hotels near its capital, Hanoi, and its largest city, Ho Chi Minh City.
About 3 million foreign visitors spent $4.9 billion in the Philippines in 2007. The culture of the Philippines has been greatly influenced by Spanish and American colonialism, contributing to its popularity with Western tourists.
Article Written By Timothy Aldinger
Timothy Aldinger brings 20 years of experience as an instructional design consultant and corporate training strategist in the automotive, environmental, health and insurance industries. His professional writings have been published by Ford Motor Company, Chrysler Corporation, General Motors, Volkswagen, Toyota, Nissan and many other major corporations. Aldinger received his Bachelor of Arts in political theory from Michigan State University.