Philly tourism site tops in virtual visits

If web traffic is any measure of travelers’ interest in a destination, 2012 was a good year for Philadelphia. 

Meryl Levitz, who heads the Greater Philadelphia Tourism and Marketing Corporation, says the organization’s website had a 30 percent increase in visits over 2012.

A survey of the tourism websites of the nation’s 10 largest cities by the research firm Quantcast found VisitPhilly.com the most visited in the country, Levitz said.

“More and more — and this includes older audiences, younger audiences — people are turning to the Web to get ideas on where they want to go what they want to do,” Levitz said.

 Levitz said Philadelphia’s many festivals and other events help bring tourists to town.

“Big events such as Made in America or World Soccer Cup — these are national and international events that have wide built-in audiences, and that puts Philadelphia on the map for many people who did not think of the city as a place where big things could happen,” Levitz said.

Officials have also developed a new marketing package called “With Art Philadelphia” that combines a hotel stay with guaranteed admission to six top art destinations, from the Barnes to the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology. 

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