Spain has maintained its status as the firm favourite of British holidaymakers, with some 13.6 million Brits flying to the Iberian peninsula for their holidays in 2012.
British visitors helped to make 2012 Spain’s third most successful year for tourism to date, defying the global recession to retain one of the most thriving tourist industries in the world.
Across 2012, 57.7 million foreign visitors chose Spain as their holiday destination, an increase of 2.7 per cent on 2011, and surpassed only by 2006 and 2007 as its best years for visitor numbers to date.
While British tourists accounted for almost a quarter of all visitors to Spain across the year, the country was also hugely popular with Germans, with 9.4 million German tourists in 2012.
The largest rise in tourist numbers from a single country came from Russia, with a 40 per cent increase in tourists visiting Spain in 2012. The Russian and Chinese markets were identified as crucial for the future of Spain’s tourism industry, by its Minister for Industry, Energy and Tourism, José Manuel Soria, speaking at the ITB Convention in Berlin this week.
The Spanish tourist industry has been central to its economy for many years, and its popularity as a tourist destination continues to endure, thanks to its warm climate, sandy beaches and beautiful landscapes, as well as its fascinating cities and outstanding cultural heritage.
It appears as though tourism in Spain could be set for another strong year in 2013, with the current economic climate leading to British tourists looking to traditional destinations for their holidays. Spain, with its longstanding reputation for good value, along with great facilities for families and almost guaranteed sunshine, stands in a strong position.