Ljubljana, 18 April (STA) - A total of 3.3 million tourists visited Slovenia in 2012, which is 2.5% more than the year before, while the number of overnight stays was up 1.3% to 9.6m. Both figures are a new record, which can be attributed above all to an influx of foreign guest, show official data published by the Statistics Office on Thursday.
Tourists from abroad accounted for a record 2.16mm arrivals and 5.78m overnight stays, beating the 2011 results by 6% in both categories.
The number of domestic tourists decreased, with arrivals dropping 3% to 1.14m and overnight stays by 5% to 3.73m.
Municipalities with spa resorts saw the greatest number of overnight stays, with the 3.09m figure being on par with 2011 results.
Municipalities in mountain areas followed with 2.78m, up 3%, while coastal municipalities recorded 2.05m overnight stays, down 3% on 2011. Almost 8% growth was recorded in the capital, which had 857,000 overnight stays.
Italians were the foreign tourists accounting for the greatest number of overnight stays (17%), followed by Austrians and Germans (12% each), Russians (6%), Croatians and the Dutch (5% each).
Italian and German tourists were the most frequent visitors in coastal hotels, Austrians top the spa resorts list, while Croatians preferred hotels in mountain municipalities. Dutch tourists are especially fond of camping and accounted for 62% of all overnight stays in camps.
The number of Russian tourists rose the most compared to 2011 (by 36%), followed by the Dutch (26%), Germans (7%), Austrians (3%) and Croatians (2%).
On the other hand, fewer British tourists (-6%), Italians (-5%), Serbians (-3%) and Hungarians (-2%) visited Slovenia last year.
Visitors from remote countries - the US, Canada, Japan, China, South Korea and other Asian countries - accounted for 6% of overnight stays. The number of Japanese tourists increased by 19%, of US visitors by 17%, Chinese by 8% and Canadian by 1%.
While hotels accounted for 61% of all overnight stays, two-thirds of which by foreign guests, youth hostels recorded a notable 29% increase.