The Wisconsin Department of Tourism released 2023 economic impact data, showing that Manitowoc County tourism experienced a record-breaking 2023, generating $226 million in economic impact and contributing to Wisconsin tourism’s historic $25 billion economic impact.

The statewide results mark back-to-back record years for the Wisconsin tourism industry and the third consecutive record-breaking year for Manitowoc County – a strong bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic dip.

The 2023 economic impact surpassed the previous statewide record of $23.7 billion set in 2022. Manitowoc County also surpassed the previous record of $217 million set in 2022. Statewide, tourism’s historic year was fueled by economic impact growth in all 72 counties, a record number of overnight visitors for a second consecutive year and investments tourism businesses made in goods and services.

“We are thrilled to commend this moment for Manitowoc’s tourism industry,” said Courtney Hansen, Visit Manitowoc’s Director of Tourism. “All of our local tourism partners have contributed to setting this record; thank you and congratulations! Thanks to our collective efforts, strong regional partnerships and strategic marketing efforts, the future of Manitowoc’s tourism industry continues to shine brightly.”

Additionally, last year, Manitowoc County tourism supported 1,723 part- and full-time jobs across various sectors of the industry, part of the more than 178,000 jobs sustained by tourism across the state. Tourism in Manitowoc County also generated $14.3 million in local and state tax revenue. Statewide, tourism generated $1.6 billion in local and state tax revenue in 2023. Without this revenue, each Wisconsin household would pay an additional $660 to maintain the current level of government services.

In 2023, Wisconsin welcomed 113 million visits, nearly 2 million more than the previous year. The number includes 45.9 million overnight visits last year – the second consecutive year of record-breaking overnight visitation. Overnight visitors, on average, spend almost three times as much as a day-trip visitor. View the 2023 economic impact data here, including a county-by-county breakdown.

This record was made possible in part by a fresh and modern vision for Manitowoc’s tourism industry. In just over two years since inception, Visit Manitowoc has been hard at work implementing data-proven marketing efforts to showcase the Manitowoc area as a great place to make travel memories. Milestone projects have included the creation and launch of a new research-driven visual identity and logo, opening a visitor information center in the heart of downtown, partnering with Explore Two Rivers on a reimagined visitor guide highlighting the sister communities and launching This website offers a visual, mobile-first design, new original content and beautiful photography. From detailed attraction and event listings, blog posts and itinerary ideas, this marketing tool has greatly elevated how the City of Manitowoc’s Department of Tourism promotes the city to potential visitors. In addition, Visit Manitowoc has brought brand-new events to the community, grown longtime favorite events with innovative marketing and PR tactics, and continues to grow the visitor information experience locally, notably by soon launching visitor information kiosks in the key locations across the community to best meet visitors where they are at.

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Travel Wisconsin economic impact infographic