Tourism Ministry says nearly 100,000 tourists visited the country in the first 18 days of the year with Russia overtaking India as the top market for tourists to the Maldives.

Weekly statistics from the Ministry showed that between the 1st to 18th of January, 97, 873 tourists arrived in the country. It said that during this time back in 2022, 79, 718 tourists arrived in the country.

The data showed a growth of 22.8 percent in tourist arrival in the first 18 days of 2023 compared to that of 2022.

The Tourism Ministry said that 15 percent of the tourist arrival was shared by Russia as it regained the first spot on the top 10 market list. Back in 2021 Russia was in the top spot but dropped down to 2nd in 2022 due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It said that 15,218 tourists arrived from Russia and that Italy followed in the 2nd spot with 10,660 arrivals.

Last year's top market India dropped to 3rd place on the top 10 list with 9,242 arrivals.

The other 7 countries on the top ten list include the United Kingdom, Germany, the USA, France, Kazakhstan, Australia, and Switzerland.

The weekly update showed that out of the 172 resorts in the country, 168 are now operational and that all 13 hotels in the country are currently taking on guests.