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Washington DC Draws 20 Million Domestic Tourists in Year for 1st Time

  • Associated Press

Visitors are reflected as they enter the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Cultural on the National Mall in Washington, May 1, 2017.

The tourism bureau in the nation's capital says a record 20 million U.S. visitors traveled to Washington in 2016.

Destination DC released the domestic visitation total on Tuesday. International visitor totals will be released in August.

The number of domestic tourists beat the previous record of 19.3 million, set in 2015.

Tourism in Washington decreased after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and again during the recession of 2007-2009. But the number of visitors has increased steadily over the past several years.

Destination DC president Elliott Ferguson says in a statement that the new National Museum of African American History and Culture helped draw more tourists last year, along with new hotels. The highest-profile new hotel is Trump International on Pennsylvania Avenue, five blocks from the White House.

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