More than 1.61 million tourists have visited Iceland so far this year—a record-breaking jump in visitor. In 1949, 5,000 people visited the North Atlantic island, in 2010 more than half a million, and in just six years that number has climbed remarkably. So what accounts for this spike? Cheap airfares, widespread marketing, and an erupting volcano. The eruption of Eyjafjallajokull in 2010 may have caused global chaos, but it also spiked widespread interest in the country.
Americans make up a majority of the tourists visiting—325,000.