Of the 13.7 million foreign tourists who traveled to Japan in the first six months of this year, about one-fourth, or 3.4 million, were Koreans.
The latest figure for Korean tourists to Japan marks a 42.5 percent jump from the same period a year earlier.
Trailing behind Korean tourists were Chinese, Taiwanese and Hong Kongers.
|Koreans leave for holiday from Incheon International Airport. (Yonhap)|
The JNTO said the sharp increase in the number of Korean tourists reflects an improved perception of safety in Japan after a passage of time since the Kumamoto earthquake in April last year.
The agency also said that Koreans are now more likely to travel to Japan rather than China due to the conflict between Korea and China over the deployment of a US anti-missile system.
The Japanese government aims to attract 40 million foreign tourists annually in 2020, when Tokyo is set to host the Summer Olympics.
By Lim Jeong-yeo (firstname.lastname@example.org)