2 February 2024

Tourist Movements at Borders (FRONTUR)

December 2023 and year 2023. Provisional data

Main results

  • Spain received 5.2 million international tourists in December, 26.2% more than in the same month of 2022.
  • In 2023, the number of tourists increased by 18.7%.

In December, Spain received 5.2 million international tourists, 26.2% more than in the same month of 2022. This figure stood at 21.0% above the one in the same month of 2019.

International tourists arrivals by months. December 2023

Annual variation. Percentage

The United Kingdom was the main country of residence, with over 907,752 million tourists and an increase of 18.7% compared to December 2022. There were 819,405 tourists from France (23.7% more) and 561,521 from Germany (23.7% more).

International tourists arrivals (*) by country of residence. December 2023

(*) Does not include transit travellers or same-day visitors (excursionists).

(**) Includes Russia’s estimation.

Main type of accommodation and other characteristics of the trips

The number of tourists choosing market accommodation as the main type of accommodation increased by 22.3% in the annual rate. Within this type, hotel accommodation grew by 15.9%, and rented dwellings by 69.1%. Non-market accommodation increased by 38.3%.

International tourist arrivals by type of accommodation. December 2023

A stay of four to seven nights was the main length among tourists, with more than 2.2 million tourists and an annual increase of 18.9%. The number of visitors increased by 22.3% among those without overnight stays (excursionists) and increased by 32.7% among tourists with longer duration (more than 15 nights).

Almost 4.1 million tourists travelled without a package tour in December, an increase of 24.8%. Over 1.1 million travelled with a package tour, 31.3% more.

Autonomous communities of main destination

Canarias was the main tourist destination in December, with 26.4% of the total. It was followed by Cataluña (19.6%) and Comunitat Valenciana (13.7%).

12.6% more tourists visited Canarias than in December 2022. The number of tourists who visited Cataluña increased by 25.4% and those who visited Comunitat Valenciana rose by 39.0%.

International tourist arrivals by main Autonomous Community of destination. Monthly and cumulative data. December 2023

Results for the whole of 2023

In 2023, a total of 85.1 million tourists visited Spain, representing an increase of 18.7% compared with the previous year.

If this figure is compared with 2019, the number of tourist arrivals stood 1.9% higher.

International tourist arrivals by year. Year 2023


The main countries of residence of the tourists who visited Spain in 2023 were the United Kingdom, France and Germany.

Arrivals of tourists resident in the United Kingdom rose by 14.6%, those from France by 17.0% and those from Germany by 10.6%.

International tourist arrivals by country of residence. Year 2023


In 2023, Cataluña was the autonomous community which received the most tourists, followed by Illes Balears and Canarias.

Cataluña was visited by 18.0 million tourists (21.2% more than in 2022), Illes Balears by 14.4 million (9.1% more) and Canarias by 13.9 million (13.1% more).

International tourist arrivals by main autonomous community of destination. Year 2023


Data reviews and updates

The data published today is provisional and will be revised in March. All results are available on INEBase.

Methodological note

The main objective of the Tourist Movement on Borders Survey (FRONTUR) is to estimate the number of non-residents visiting Spain on a monthly basis, as well as to know the main characteristics of the trips made by these visitors. For the preparation of FRONTUR the international definitions and recommendations of the UNWTO and EUROSTAT in this field are followed.

Type of operation:
continuous monthly statistics.
Population scope:
this refers to non-residents in Spain who enter our country, whether or not they have stayed overnight, as well as those who pass through our country in transit.
Geographical scope:
the entire national territory. The sample is collected at the main access points for non-resident travelers, both by road, airport, port and rail.
Reference period of the results:
the month.
Sample size:
the annual theoretical sample size of FRONTUR exceeds 450,000 surveys, which are distributed throughout the year, taking into account the seasonality of passenger flow.
Type of sampling:
the sample design, a series of strata have been defined for each form of entry that group together border points, airports, ports or railway lines, respectively. In the road and airport sample allocation, the day of the week in which the survey has been carried out is also identified, differentiating between working days, weekends and holidays. Furthermore, in airports 20 air relations are defined (Spanish airport of origin-country of destination airport) which also determine the sample design in this form of access.
Collection method:
information is collected by direct interview when the traveler leaves Spain, using a multilingual electronic questionnaire.

For more information you can access the methodology and the standardized methodological report.

INE statistics are produced in accordance with the Code of Good Practice for European Statistics. More information in Quality at INE and the Code of Best Practices.

For further information see Inicio INEbase Official INE account on @es_ine
All press releases at:
Press office:
(+34) 91 583 93 63 / 94 08gprensa@ine.es
Information area:
(+34) 91 583 91 00www.ine.es/infoine/?L=1