Chile had a Good Month for Tourism in January

The number of foreign visitors to Chile in January was up 17 percent from the same month in 2003 due to 232,000 arrivals in only 31 days, 34,000 more sunbathers than in January 2003, the National Tourism Service (SERNATUR) reported. SERNATUR Director Oscar Santelices explained that 70 percent of that monthly total traveled to Chile in search of leisure and the remaining 30 percent came for family reunions. Out that first 70 percent slice, 26.2 percent were Argentineans, while the rest hailed from Brazil, Europe and the U.S.

This increase in the number of foreigners also yielded a 9.5 percent spike in hard-currency revenues. The countrys travel industry reaped $115 million in January this year compared to $104 million raked in all through the same month in 2003.

Furthermore, Chilean vacationers that traveled around the country were up in double digits, partly as a result of a promotional campaign implemented by SAERNATUR, together with lodging facilities and recreation centers, in the national territory.

The most sought-after destinations in Chile are Iquique, La Serena, Viña del Mar, Puerto Varas, Puerto Montt and the southernmost tip.

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