The number of overnight stays in rural tourism establishments in Catalonia grew by 5.5% year-over-year in the third quarter of 2016, according to provisional data from the Rural tourism accommodation occupancy survey. By country of origin, the number of overnight stays of domestic tourists grew by 3.1%: from Catalonia increased by 4.5% while from the rest of Spain decreased by 6.4%; foreign visitors rose by 9.5%.
The Rural Tourism Accommodation Occupancy Survey is one of the main sources of statistics for gauging tourist activity. Its principal aim is to find out the behaviour of a series of variables that permit us to describe the fundamental characteristics of this type of accommodation in the tourism industry, both in terms of supply and of demand. Carried out each month by INE, it provides quarterly information for Catalonia on travellers, overnight stays and the occupancy rate in rural tourism establishments. Idescat analyses these variables on the basis of the travellers'places of origin and the tourist region of destination.
From January 2015 there has been implemented two changes in tourism brands, approved by Catalan Tourist Board. El Vallès Oriental and El Vallès Occidental, which until December 2014 were part of the Catalunya Central brand, become part of the Costa Barcelona brand. In addition, the Catalunya Central brand is now called Paisatges Barcelona.
Thus, Catalonia is divided into nine tourism brands: Barcelona, Costa Brava, Costa Daurada, Costa Barcelona, Paisatges Barcelona, Pirineus, Terres de Lleida, Terres de l'Ebre and Val d'Aran.