According to data released for January 2008 Murcia has seen an increase of 5% on tourist movement and visitors to the region, compared to 2007. The average increase for Spain was 0.9%. This once again proves the growing popularity of Murcia as a tourist destination, and puts the region at the top of the rankings on a year-on-year basis.
In January, a total of 32,537 visited the region, against 30,983 for the same period last year.
José Pablo Ruiz Abellán, the Councillor for Tourism and the Consumer, stated that the increase was a recognition of the work being put in by the department to promote Murcia as an attractive holiday venue in both the national and international tourism markets. With these goals in mind, the Councillor was present in Milan recently for the Tourism Fair, the first time that Murcia has participated in the show.
The show is considered one of the premier events in Italy, and with the number of Italian tourists to the region increasing by 50% in the last 3 years, now is a good time to promote Murcia´s attractions to a growing market.
Murcia Leads the Way in International Tourism
The Region of Murcia is top of the table for economic input from international tourists, with an increase of 30% in spending in the area, versus a national average of just 3%. It also shows a positive growth for international tourist numbers, an increase to 18%, against the Spanish average of 2.1%.
According to data from the Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Commerce, for November 2007, the growth figures for the region are the most important in recent years, especially when the picture for Spain as a whole is taken into account.
Other positive news is the creation of jobs in the region, up 7.1% in the industry against 4.6% for the national average. San Javier Murcia airport has also seen an increase in traveller numbers to 23%.
Cruises to the Port of Cartagena (pictured left) have also played an important part in the growth, with more than 40 cruises arriving here in the last year, an increase of 20% and a number that would have been "unthinkable" just a short while ago, according to the ministry.
Hotels in the area have also seen positive signs, with visitor numbers for overnight stays up by 16.5% compared to the 2.2% national average.
The aim is to continue to promote the region as a holiday destination for international tourism, and in 2008 the growth looks set to continue, as negotiations are ongoing with Germany, France, the UK and other countries to increase direct connections to the airport at San Javier, and to encourage visitors to check out what Murcia has to offer.
Details correct at the time of publication.