Dubrovnik Old Town

8% more tourists visited Croatia in 2011 – 11.2 million in total


A number of the newspapers in Croatia today reported on the preliminary final tourism figures for 2011, as released by the Croatian National Tourist Board – and it’s good news.

Officially, Croatia was enjoyed by 11,200,113 tourists during the year, which is up 8% on 2010. Of this figure, 9,907,827 were foreign tourists – which is also an increase of 8% on the year before – and 1,292,286 were domestic tourists, an increase of 4%. (These figures relate to tourists visiting the coastal regions of the country and the city of Zagreb.)

Tourists holidaying in Croatia stayed for 65,116,830 nights in total – a figure that’s up 7% on 2010 – with foreign visitors staying for 58,411,864 nights (up 7%) and domestic visitors accounting for 6,704,966 nights (up 5%).

Guests from Slovenia posted the highest increase in both tourist numbers – 12% – as well as the number of nights stayed when they visited the country, which went up by 11%. They were followed by visitors from Austria, of which there were 11% more in 2011, staying for 10% more nights; visitors from Germany (10% more, staying for 9% more nights); then visitors from Slovakia (7% more visitors, 8% more nights); visitors from Poland (6% more, 5% more nights); from the Czech Republic (5% more visitors who stayed for 5% more nights); and Italy (4% more visitors in 2011, 3% more nights).

These figures from the Tourist Board reveal increases in visitor numbers for all Croatia’s coastal regions as well as in the city of Zagreb. Dalmatia received the most tourist arrivals, 4,913,074, which is up 6% on 2010; these visitors stayed for 29,742,157 nights in total, which is also up by 6% on the year before. Istria was the second most popular region for visitors during the year, with 3,011,316 tourists visiting (10% more), followed by the Kvarner region where 2,185,601 people chose to holiday in 2011 (8% up). By comparison to the coastal areas, the city of Zagreb received considerably less visitors in 2011 – 664,171 – but this was a healthy 10% more on the year before whilst the number of nights stayed by tourists – 1,144,278 – was also up by 10%.

Tourism figures for December alone were also released today, revealing some promising increases in tourist numbers for a month that’s far removed from the peak season months of summer. 118,926 tourists visited Croatia during the month, which is 5% more than in December 2010; these tourists stayed for 295,094 nights in total, which 8% up. Not all regions posted increases for that month, however – Split-Dalmatia, Zadar and Sibenik-Knin counties all saw fewer visitors in December. Dubrovnik-Neretva county, on the other hand, saw a great 20% more visitors (12,652 visitors in total), staying for 25% more nights (31,374 nights). Given the push to promote the city of Dubrovnik as a year-round destination, these increases are surely a step in the right direction. The regions of Kvarner and Istria were also popular that month; Kvarner saw 24,909 tourists visit (8% up), whilst 22,505 visited Istria (9% up).

Let’s hope these increasing trends continue for 2012!

Sources: Croatian National Tourist Board; HRT; Vecernji