JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Jacksonville is seeing an uptick in tourism.

The area saw a historic amount of growth in tourism in the last year. City officials reported in 2022 that the total amount of occupancy tax collected was over $4 million. This amount is 10% more than the previous year.

Economic experts think this is due to the pandemic coming to an end and more people leaving their houses.

“We saw with things opening back up, we saw increased visitation into the county, and especially to our beach locations, especially North Topsail Beach,” said Salem Clarke, the Onslow County tourism manager.

This year has been designated as the North Carolina Year of the Trail. Clarke said they hope that even more people will come to the area and take advantage of this by hiking, biking, paddling, and horseback riding.