• Museum attendance went down by roughly 78% in 2020 across the 20 most-attended museums in the world, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Paris' Museé de Louvre had 2.7 million visitors in 2020, making it the most visited museum in the world.
  • The National Museum of China situated in Beijing, came in second with roughly 1.6 million visitors followed by Britain's Tate Modern in third.

Even with travel restrictions, curfews and closures of tourist attractions all over the world due to coronavirus pandemic, the Museé de Louvre still saw 2.7 million people visiting its exhibitions in 2020. As our chart shows, the runner-ups for the title of most-visited museum in the past year don't really come close.

Coming in second place is the National Museum of China situated in Beijing with roughly 1.6 million visitors. The museum is a result of the 2003 merger of the Museum of the Chinese Revolution and the National Museum of Chinese History which were founded in 1950 and 1912, respectively. Even when judging its age by its oldest department, the state-led institution is still the youngest on the list. The Vatican Museums, on the other hand, are only in fourth place when it comes to the number of visitors, but were founded by Pope Julius II in 1506, making them one of the oldest still existing museumsin Europe.

a chart showing the most visited museums
Paris' Museé de Louvre had 2.7 million visitors in 2020.
Image: Statista

Mobilising Action for Inclusive Societies

Recent years have witnessed some of the largest protests in human history. People are taking to the streets amid a desire for change, putting pressure on decision-makers for urgent and courageous leadership to find sustainable and inclusive solutions to some of the major challenges ahead of us.

A range of forces are at play. By 2022, some 60% of gross domestic product will be digitized - but current education systems are failing to prepare people for decent work in this future. Based on current trends, it will also take approximately two centuries to close the global economic gender gap. Meanwhile, the world’s richest 1% are on course to control as much as two-thirds of the world’s wealth by 2030.

To tackle these challenges, Mobilising Action for Inclusive Societies is one of the four focus areas at the World Economic Forum's 2019 Sustainable Development Impact summit. A range of sessions will bring stakeholders together to take action that will bolster local entrepreneurship and innovation, while making growth more equitable.

Overall, museum attendance went down by roughly 78 percent across the 20 most-attended museums in the world, with only 22.4 million people visiting those kinds of institutions in 2020. According to a survey by the International Council of Museums conducted in September and October of 2020, the impact of COVID-19 will be most visible in a reduction of public programs and exhibitions. 67 and 62 percent of respondents, respectively, named these consequences of the pandemic as likely, while only six percent believed that their museum had to close for good.