Nordic countries, with their breath-taking landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and high quality of life, have become increasingly popular destinations for tourists seeking unique experiences. In this blog post, we will delve into the tourism statistics of the Nordic countries - Denmark, Finland, Norway, Iceland, and Sweden.
All Nordic countries welcome millions of tourists annually, making tourism a significant contributor to the economies of these nations.
Tourism in the Nordics in 2023, was even more successful than the previous year when domestic travel started to increase rapidly. Finland nearly reached the same numbers in registered bed nights as in 2019 while Norway and Denmark* registered a record number of nights in hotels, holiday villages, hostels and camping sites. All countries experienced an increase in bed nights compared to previous year, with Iceland leading (+19%*), Finland four percent, Norway three percent and Sweden one percent growth.
International tourism reverted to pre-pandemic times, and in Denmark, Iceland and Norway, the number of foreign bed nights was higher than ever recorded in history! Finland and Sweden also saw an increase in foreign bed nights compared to the previous year but did not reach the 2019 level.
The number of domestic travellers continued to increase in Finland, but the growth was more moderate than in 2022. Finland set another historical record with over 17 million registered domestic bed nights in 2023. In Iceland, the number of domestic travellers rapidly increased after the pandemic, and in 2023, it had doubled compared to 2019.
A significant aspect of Nordic tourism in 2023 was the emphasis and investment in sustainable tourism. Overall, in all Nordic countries, the length of stay for both foreign and domestic travellers slightly decreased. From a sustainable development perspective, this indicator is crucial, as destinations reduce their carbon footprint effectively by enticing visitors to stay longer. While staying longer, a tourist also uses more local services and spends more money. This way tourism revenue can be increased without increasing the number of tourists.
Another measure of sustainable tourism is seasonal variation. The smaller the variation, the better, as local communities can rely on the industry throughout the year. Also, this way, there is a smaller risk of mass tourism, as the visitor flow is constant, and no season becomes overly busy. The smallest seasonal variation among the Nordic countries was in Finland.
*December 2023 in Denmark and Iceland is estimated.
Interested to learn more about tourism in the Nordic countries? Looking for data for your destination or organization? Look no further and contact us at email@example.com to get access to data today.