Daugavpils City Municipality Tourism Development and Information Agency has compiled data on the number of visitors to the Daugavpils tourist sites between the May 1st and September 30th, 2016 and revealed that the total number of visitors was 231 478 which is by 5 465 visitors or 2, 4% more that in the same period of 2015.
It should be noted that a set of new tourism offers appeared in 2016 that has affected tourism industry positively. For instance, Shmakovka Museum, Daugavpils Bat Centre, as well as quest game “Escape room” are most recent novelties in Daugavpils. In addition, 1st Coastal Lunette of the Daugavpils Fortress was open during the peak tourist season.
A significant part of international and domestic visitors to Daugavpils was attracted by the numerous events such as Daugavpils City Festival, the Night of Museums, International Festival of the Military Historical Reconstruction “Dinaburg – 1812” held in the Daugavpils Fortress, as well as Speedway Championships. Certainly, events create a strong demand for all kinds of tourist services: attendance at the tourist objects, accommodation services, food facilities, cultural, entertainment and information services.
According to the data, the increase of 15% in the number of visitors was identified at the Daugavpils Fortress Culture and Information Centre. Besides, Daugavpils Clay Art Centre was visited by 38% more visitors and Latgale Zoo by 6% more people compared to last year. The analysis of the data revealed that five most popular tourist attractions in Daugavpils during the peak tourist season were Mark Rothko Art Centre that was visited by 57 919 visitors or 25% of the total number of travelers, Daugavpils Fortress and Daugavpils Fortress Culture and Information Centre that served 32 923 visitors or 14%, Latgale Zoo that was visited by 26 060 visitors or 11%, as well as the Daugavpils Museum of Regional History and Art that welcomed 9 272 visitors or 4%. In fact, visitors of these tourism objects together comprised more than 60% of the total tourist flow.
The ratio of domestic and foreign visitors who attended Daugavpils tourist sites in the peak tourist season of 2016 is as follows: 84% - domestic visitors and 16% - foreign visitors. The greatest number of foreign tourists visiting Daugavpils tourist sites recorded from Lithuania - 26%, Germany – 12%, Great Britain – 10%, Russia – 9%, Poland - 8% and Belarus- 5%. Based on the analysis of statistical data, relatively large number of visitors was revealed from United States (848 visitors or 2%) and Turkey (699 visitors or 2%). As known, the purpose of these specific travelers is business, as well as nostalgic tourism.
Concerning the Daugavpils Tourism Information Centre (TIC), it was revealed that there were 69% Latvian visitors and 31% foreign visitors during the 1st of May and the 30th of September, 2016. What is more, although the reduction in the number of domestic tourists was observed, the number of foreign travelers increased significantly compared with the same period last year. As trends in the tourism development show, more and more travelers are using online resources including social media as a principal source of tourist information. Electronic technology creates a new marketplace in tourism making a huge amount of data to be accessible at any time and place, and to comply with demands, needs and desires of consumers. Therefore, one of the key strategies of the Daugavpils TIC is an adaptation to these trends and the use of the official tourist site - www.visitdaugavpils.lv as a primary information provider in tourism. As a result, according to the Google Analytics data, the number of page views reached 280 029 and increased by 12% compared to the same period last year. Visitors of the webpage were mostly interested in the sights of the city, lodging facilities and undergoing events.
It is worth to mention that many other information channels are widely used, for example, tourist information leaflets are extensively distributed at the Latvian tourist information centres and tourist accommodation services. Moreover, the city of Daugavpils was represented at numerous international tourism exhibitions in Finland, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Estonia, Germany, Sweden and Latvia where travelers had opportunity to be acquainted with the Daugavpils tourism offer and received information leaflets that could help with the planning of a trip in a future.
In fact, peak tourist season usually begins on May 1st and continues till September 30th. Peak tourist season is characterised by high intensity of the tourist flow, high tourist presence at the tourist attractions, as well as great demand for the tourist services.
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