Summer beach 370.
(photo credit: GPO)
Israel tourism reached a milestone between January and July, attracting more than two million visitors, the Central Bureau of Statistics reported Monday.
The record total represents a 1 percent increase from the same period during 2012, 8% more than in 2011 and 6% more than 2010.
“Israel is an attractive country, and the tourists are voting with their feet,” Tourism Minister Uzi Landau said in a statement Monday.
Of the two million entries, 1.7 million were tourists – 1% fewer than in 2012, 2% more than in 2011 and 6% more than in 2010. Approximately 357,000 entries were day visitors, 10% more than during the same period last year.
Roughly 1.4 million entries arrived by air, a slight increase of 0.4% compared to the same period in 2012; about 139,000 arrived on cruise ships, 27% more than last year; and 148,000 came via border crossings, a 9% drop from 2012.
The country reached an all time record for tourist entries during July, according to the report.
A total of 246,000 tourists, staying more than one night, entered the country last month, a 2% increase from July 2012, 4% more than in July 2011 and 3% more than in July 2010, the statistics bureau said.
“Tourism is an essential engine for economic growth, and we will continue our work in increasing the number of visitors to Israel and realizing the tourism potential,” Landau said.