Speaking in Italy late last night, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said 82 million people visited Spain last year, a 9% increase on 2016.
The staggering figures came despite the terrorist attacks in Barcelona and the Catalunya referendum crisis which saw a dip in bookings.
Tourism earnings rose 12%, totaling €87 billion.
In 2016, Spain welcomed 75.3 million visitors, just behind the United States with 75.6 million, while France – despite its own terror woes – easily remained the world leader with 82.6 million visitors, according to the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
International tourism to the United States shrank during the first five months of Donald Trump’s presidency, according to the US International Trade Administration.
Arrivals fell 5% in the first quarter and 3% in the second quarter, official figures show.
Rajoy praised the Spanish tourism sector’s ‘great effort’, as tourism arrivals beat records for the fifth consecutive year.
Arrivals recovered after dropping off by five percent year-on-year in October as massive demonstrations were staged following a failed independence bid.
France – still the most-visited country – said in December it estimated 2017 arrivals at upwards of 89 million.
- ‘DRUG HILLS’: British expats in upmarket urbanisation on Spain’s Costa del Sol wake up to ‘disgraceful’ graffiti - 20 Mar, 2019 @ 11:47
- Westley Capper arrives at Malaga court on last day of Agnese Klavina trial after damning CCTV footage shown to court - 20 Mar, 2019 @ 11:20
- Dead body dumped on Spain’s Costa del Sol was of young foreigner, 23, and had at least 10 gunshot wounds - 19 Mar, 2019 @ 10:59
- Guardia Civil cop who killed three people after causing pile up on Costa del Sol while driving on cocaine ordered to pay €1.4 million in compensation - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 16:52
- SACRE BLOW! French smuggling gang which moved cocaine and hashish between Morocco, Malaga and Europe busted in joint operation - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 16:12
- Residents feel shaking as FOUR earthquakes rock Malaga - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 15:33
- Rain and cold wind forecast for Spain’s Malaga this week - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 15:16
- WATCH: Manhunt launched after pharmacy robbed at GUNPOINT on Spain’s Costa del Sol - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 12:45
- Dead body found dumped with ‘several gunshot wounds’ on Spain’s Costa del Sol - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 12:31
- British expats facing 12 years in prison and €84,000 in compensation costs as trial over missing Agnese Klavina begins in Malaga TODAY - 18 Mar, 2019 @ 11:22