|File photo taken on Aug. 17, 2012 shows tourists visiting the Drepung Monastery in Lhasa, capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region. Statistics showed Tibet received 10.584 million tourists in 2012 and earned a revenue of more than 12.65 billion RMB yuan (about 2 billion U.S. dollars), rising by 21.7 percent and 30.3 percent respectively year on year. (Xinhua/Purbu Zhaxi)
LHASA, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region witnessed booming tourism in 2012, with tourist arrivals hitting a record high of over 10 million thanks to improved transportation and government promotion.
The number of tourists visiting the region surged 21.7 percent year on year to 10.58 million, sources from the region's tourism bureau said.
Revenues for the tourism sector increased 30.3 percent year on year to 12.65 billion yuan (2 billion U.S. dollars), according to the sources.
Three national parks were opened in the region last year, adding to existing attractions, such as the Potala Palace.
The Tibetan government launched a series of campaigns to promote regional tourism in 2012. The region is home to 70 class-A national scenic spots, as well as 211 star-rated hotels.
Authorities expect to see 15 million tourists annually by 2015.