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2016 – one more good year for Latvian tourism
In 2016, 2.3 million visitors were hosted at Latvian tourist accommodation establishments, which was 7.7 % more than the year before.
According to the latest data of the Central Statistical Bureau (CSB), the respective indicator has increased by 75 % from the 1.3 million hosted in 2010.
As compared to 2015, the number of nights spent by visitors has increased by 7.5 %. The average duration of a visitor's stay at an accommodation establishment was 1.9 nights.
In 2016, 1.57 million foreign visitors were hosted at accommodation establishments, and this figure has grown by 6.7 % in comparison to 2015.
The number of nights spent by foreign visitors has increased by 5.9 %.
Most of the foreign visitors came from Russia (208.8 thsd), Germany (187.8 thsd) and the Baltic neighbour states – Lithuania (158.8 thsd) and Estonia (145.3 thsd). There has been a significant increase in the number of visitors from China (of 57.8 %), the USA (33.9 %), Israel (27.5 %), the United Kingdom (22.7 %), Spain (21.6 %) and Finland (21.5 %). Slight growth was experienced in the number of visitors from Russia – of 2.5 %. In turn, there were less foreign visitors from Belgium (by 25.4 %), the Netherlands (8.4 %), Norway (4.7 %) , Sweden (3.6 %) and the Czech Republic (3.2 %).
The neighbouring countries of Latvia accounted for 34.9 % of all foreign visitors – 13.3 % were from Russia, 10.1 % from Lithuania, 9.2 % from Estonia and 2.3 % from Belarus.Of all foreign visitors, 79.3 % stayed in Riga, 7.3 % – in Jūrmala, 1.7 % – in Liepāja, 1.6 % – in Ventspils, 1.4 % – in Sigulda county and 1.1 % – in Daugavpils.
In 2016, 730.0 thsd Latvian residents were hosted at tourist accommodation establishments, which was 9.8 % more than in 2015, whereas the number of nights spent increased by 11.0 %, reaching 1.37 million.
The most popular destinations among Latvian residents were Riga (24.7 % of visitors), Liepāja (8.2 %), Jūrmala (7.7 %), Ventspils (4.1 %), Sigulda county (3.6 %), Daugavpils (3.5 %), Engure county (3.2 %) and Kuldīga county (3.1 %).
In 2016, 85.4 % of visitors stayed at hotels and similar accommodation establishments, 11.1 % chose guest houses and other short-stay accommodation, whereas 3.5 % stayed at camping grounds and trailer parks.