After receiving over 4.2 million visitors in 2016, Gran Canaria officially recorded the best year for tourism in its history, according to the latest data from Frontur and the Canarian Statistics Institute. Confirming growth of 13.6% and a half million more tourists that in 2015, when 3.7 million people chose Gran Canaria as a holiday destination.
This increase consolidates Gran Canaria as the island in the Archipelago that led in terms of percentage growth in national and international travellers over the last year, with almost 14 million tourists having opted to travel to the Canary Islands to spend their holidays.
“The excellent data from year-end 2016 (4,223,679 tourists) reflect the important promotional work done by the island abroad and represents a major boost with which to face the new challenges posed in 2017, such as reducing seasonality, increasing tourist spending at destination and loyalty from the new visitors”, said the Cabildo de Gran Canaria’s Minister of Tourism, Inés Jimenez.
Tourists from the UK saw the biggest increase of all the markets in 2016, with 787,500 Brits visiting the island and resulting in 25% growth with 158,000 more visitors than the year before.
The increase in the Spanish national market has also been historic, with over 551,000 tourists from mainland. This figure marks a new record, 80,000 new travellers and an increase of 17% compared to 2015.
The German market maintained its leadership in absolute terms, as the country sending the largest number of international tourists to Gran Canaria in 2016. 960,000 German tourists opted to come to Gran Canaria, 11.3% more than in 2015.
At the same time, Nordic countries combined (Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland) consolidated their position as the second largest market coming to the island with 938,600 visitors in 2016, 28,360 more visitors than in 2015, an increase of 3%.
Though all four Nordic countries speak their own different languages, they all tend to speak English very well, making them of particular interest to English speaking businesses on the island
Emerging markets like Italy saw notable growth to total 93,000 tourists, an increase of 20,7% more than in 2015, and travellers coming from Holland have grown 19%, Ireland increased 16.7%, France rose 12%, while Belgium registered a 14% increase, which serves to consolidate their interest in Gran Canaria as one of the favourite European tourist destinations.