DESPITE a record number of overseas visitors flocking to Andalucia this summer, national tourists were in shorter supply.

A healthy 25.2 million overnight stays were recorded between June and September, while September was also the busiest month for tourism in the country’s history, according to Spain’s National Statistics Institute.

However, notwithstanding a 7% increase in international tourists, the number of Spain-based tourists fell by 4.3%.

Andalucia’s Junta has vowed to do more to appeal to its domestic market as a result.

“We need to make more effort in the national market, because these are essential clients,” said Francisco Javier Fernández, Andalucia’s tourism minister.   

“These tourists prefer other types of holiday and shorter trips so we are going to make some structural changes based on this.

“We cannot lose sight of the national tourists, because they are our best clients, the most loyal, and they have saved us more than once.”

Malaga was the most popular destination for tourists, receiving 38% of visitors to Andalucia.

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