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Romania and Germany generate bulk of tourist visits to Bulgaria

Romania and Germany generated the biggest number of tourists visit to Bulgaria in January-September 2009, shows national statistical data.

The number of Romanian arrivals jumped 40% year-on-year to 1.3 million, including 600,000 visits declared as excursion or holiday. Some 650,000 Romanians made a transit trip via Bulgaria en route to their holiday destination in Greece. Bulgaria's northern neighbor is now its biggest tourist market, surpassing Germany and the UK. Germany is second with 730,000 visitors, including 520,000 holiday-makers.

That market is 17% up on 2006. The UK is fourth with 410,000 visitors, up 7% year on year. That number includes 380,000 holiday-makers. Malta posted the biggest year-on-year increase, which is explained with the extremely low base. A total of 4,000 Maltese nationals visited Bulgaria during the review period. The runner-up in terms of growth is Hungary with 90% increase in visits to 120,000. Ireland is also up there with a 50% increase. (