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Beyond Benidorm: Spain tourist moves inland


Rural and green travel is the brand-new frontier for Spain’s tourist market as it attempts to break devoid of its reliance on mass seaside travel and battle stiff competitors from less expensive Mediterranean competitors.

Foreign visitors represented simply 5 percent of all travelers who remained at a rural house in the nation in 2014.

Today they comprise 20 percent, according to the tourist ministry, a share the federal government wishes to increase to 35 percent.

“We must have done something right,” the ministry’s director for sustainable tourist, Ricardo Blanco, stated at the five-day Fitur tourist trade fair in Madrid which finishes up Sunday.

Spain, the world’s second-most gone to nation after France, struck a record of traveler arrivals for the seventh year in a row in 2015, with almost 84 million foreign visitors.

But the huge resorts which began in the 1960 s along the nation’s southern shoreline saw earnings fall by 0.7 percent as sunseekers from northern Europe went back to less costly locations in Turkey, Tunisia and Egypt which they had actually avoided for many years due to security issues.

– Pilgrim power –

By contrast foreign tourist grew by “almost double digits” in Spain’s green northern coast, and succeeded in the dry and underpopulated centre which is house to middle ages architecture, according to a current report from tourist business lobby group Exceltur which wishes to end a dependence on “sun and beach” tourist.

In the northern Asturias area, where a wet environment generates a wealth of forests and abundant plants, the federal government’s efforts have “started to bear fruit”, stated the local federal government’s deputy tourist minister Graciela Blanco.

The area, which has actually long been popular with Spaniards, invited a record 400,000 foreign visitors in 2015.

Foreigners represented 20 percent of all visitors to Asturias in 2019, up from 10 percent a years earlier.

Asturias has actually gained from restored interest in the historic Camino de Santiago expedition path which goes through the area.

And the city government has actually increased promo of the area’s natural parks for treking, biking and eco-tourism in other European nations in addition to Japan and South Korea, where there is strong interest in the expedition path understood in English as the “Saint James Way”.

The circumstance is comparable in the neighbouring northwestern area of Galicia where the variety of foreign travelers has actually almost folded the previous 10 years.

The expedition path ends in Santiago de Compostela, the capital of Galicia, and services accommodating travelers have actually grown up in the area such as white wine trips and horseback riding in a quote to bring in the pilgrims.

Many pilgrims go back to Galicia to go sightseeing and participate in these activities, stated Carmen Fernandez, a spokesperson for the area’s tourist board.

– Hard sell –

But interior areas “remain very hard to sell online” to travelers, stated Cristina Brunet, who owns numerous bed and breakfasts in the northern city of Palencia in the Castilla-Leon area, among Spain’s most depopulated locations.

Tourists searching for locations to invest their vacations type the names of areas they currently understand into online search engine, and the federal government does not participate in sufficient tourist fairs beyond Spain to promote the interior, she included.

“Everyone has heard of Marbella, Torremolinos and Benidorm but no one knows the rest of the country,” stated Eduardo Gutierrez of public tourist development body Segittur, in a recommendation to 3 popular seaside resorts on Spain’s southern coast.

Rural locals who wish to open a bed and breakfast or other tourism-related job typically do not have web connections and battle to get loans, included Maria Teresa Lopez, president of the federation of rural ladies’s associations (Fademur).

Riding the rural travel pattern

TheSaint James Way is trending once again

Some state the federal government needs to do more promoting



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