Yep, we’re skipping right past first place and looking at the guys shining (almost) just as bright behind him – the second most popular destination in the world for business travel is…

Korea (to be more specific, South Korea).

The nation received the ranking from the Union of International Associations (UIA), which determined it was an attractive place for business events and travel due to its cultural appeal and growing MICE capabilities.

This is good news for holidays from Cairns, which will get its first direct link to Korea in December this year.

Image: Korea Tourism Organisation/Facebook

Image: Korea Tourism Organisation/Facebook

In the worldwide ranking, the destination fell just short of the USA (unsurprisingly number one), but managed to land first place in Asia.

Seoul, the nation’s capital, improved last year’s city ranking from 5th to 3rd place – an increase Korea’s tourism leaders attributed to the 98.4 percent hike in meetings hosted in the city in 2015 compared to 2014.

Busan, Korea’s second-largest city, was also recognised for its popularity, attaining a global city ranking of 11 with 150 meetings.

Image: Korea Tourism Organisation/Facebook

Image: Korea Tourism Organisation/Facebook

Next year might look a little different for the destination overall, with a number of infrastructure developments underway to attract more MICE and holidaymakers.

Korea’s Australian tourism representatives recently revealed they hope to attract more Aussies by promoting it as an ideal stopover destination to Europe.

They’ve also worked on developing complimentary city tours for MICE delegates, airport welcome messages, customised event banners and souvenirs.

“We will of course continue to work actively to make Korea a highly-competitive congress host, and a country with a wealth of destinations all featuring their own unique attractions and venues.”

Kee Hun Kim, Korea MICE Bureau Executive Director

Have you ever travelled to Korea for business?