SPAIN has already smashed last year’s international tourism record before December figures have even been counted.
From January to November, some 77.8 million international visitors came to Spain, up from 75.6 million during the whole of 2016.
According to Frontur, the tourism branch of the country’s National Institute of Statistics, the figure for 2017 is likely to rise above 80 million once December figures are collected.
That estimate represents a growth of five million tourists since 2016.
The continued tourism boom comes despite Catalunya’s tourism activity taking a 15% hit as a result of the region’s political instability in October and a 2.3% hit in November.
The numbers are good news for the industry, especially considering that Catalunya received a quarter of all foreign visitors to Spain in 2016.
“The tourism sector is one of the most strongly affected by the instability,” Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told Parliament at the time of the peak in the Catalan crisis.
Fortunately, it hasn’t seemed to have affected tourists as much as feared.
The region itself actually remains the most visited ahead of the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands, despite its recent slump.
The rest of Spain saw a 7.4% rise in foreign tourism numbers in November 2017.
So far this year, 18 million Brits have chosen Spain as their holiday destination, a 7% increase compared to the same 11-month period in 2016.
In second place came German tourists – 11.4 million, up 6.1% – followed by French visitors, 10.7 million of whom have headed for Spain so far this year.
- IN PICS: The stunning 16th century estate going up for auction in Spain - 16 Jun, 2019 @ 09:07
- Fake goods costing Spain and EU billions each year - 15 Jun, 2019 @ 08:38
- Brothers cuffed after trying to stuff 11 champagne bottles down one of their tops in huge shoplifting FAIL on Spain’s Costa del Sol - 14 Jun, 2019 @ 17:22
- British tourists still flocking to Spain’s Malaga as first quarter of 2019 shows almost 10% increase in hotel stays - 14 Jun, 2019 @ 17:04
- 8 things you didn’t know were ILLEGAL to do at the beach on Spain’s Costa del Sol - 14 Jun, 2019 @ 12:29
- Young paedo groomed at least 10 children across Spain’s Alicante, Andalucia and Valencia and paid them for explicit images while posing as underage girl online - 14 Jun, 2019 @ 11:26
- BREAKING: Barack Obama will be in Marbella TOMORROW for secret meeting at luxury hotel - 13 Jun, 2019 @ 16:50
- IN PICS: Game of Thrones stars party it up in Spain’s Benidorm for Sophie Turner’s hen do ahead of ‘official’ marriage to Joe Jonas - 13 Jun, 2019 @ 16:20
- Gibraltar police fuming after rumours ‘falsely claim’ drunk off duty officer started late night brawl at Pig & Whistle pub - 13 Jun, 2019 @ 15:45
- How a gang sold more than €1.5 million of drugs EVERY WEEK with the help of a Breaking Bad-style family in Cadiz – and how they spent it on Spain’s Costa del Sol - 13 Jun, 2019 @ 15:13