The number of foreign tourists who arrived in Bulgaria in August 2014 was 14.6 per cent less than in August 2013, according to figures released by the National Statistical Institute on September 29.
Overall, the number of arrivals of visitors from abroad to Bulgaria was 1.2 per cent less than in August 2013. Business trips dropped by 50.4 per cent, the NSI said.
Separately, on September 27, the Institute for Analysis of Tourism said that about 4.7 million tourists had stayed in Bulgaria’s Black Sea resorts in summer 2014 (a remarkable statistic given the country’s population is officially about 7.1 million).
According to the Institute for Analysis of Tourism, most holidaymakers came from Germany, Russia, Romania and Greece.
A few days earlier, Bulgarian National Radio, quoting Economy Ministry sources, said that contrary to expectations, the tourist season in Bulgaria in the first half of 2014 had not been marred by a decrease in the number of holidaymakers from Russia and Ukraine.
In constrast, the tourism industry in Bulgaria had registered growth, of 6.7 per cent growth, comparing January-June 2014 to the same six months of 2013.
Just two of the top 10 traditional tourist source countries saw decreases, according to the report, of holidaymakers from Ukraine and the United Kingdom. However, the number of tourists from Ukraine was down by only four per cent, much less that the decrease of up to 40 per cent that some earlier forecasts had suggested.
(Photo: (c) Leah Sawyer)