Although Austria has always been hugely popular amongst British tourists, 2006 turned out to be a record year for numbers of visitors. Up 5.9% on 2005, 802,000 British people went to the central-European country last year. Similarly, visits from Ireland were up 30% at 330,000. In total, Austria welcomed 30 million tourists from all over the globe during the last year.
Austria is globally renowned for its ski resorts and magnificent Alpine landscape. Conditions for skiing last year were much better than in neighbouring Switzerland or Germany. Therefore, ski enthusiasts chose Austria as their number one Alpine destination.
Austria also became more accessible last year as airline companies opened new routes, not only to Vienna, but also to Klagenfurt and Salzburg. These companies have helped increase the number of visits to areas previously accessible for British people only through Vienna.
Apart from skiing and Alpine tourism, Austria has many attractions to offer cultural tourists. Numerous cultural events, such as the 250th anniversary of the birthday of the great composer Mozart, explain why visits to Vienna alone were up 6.9%. There are 15 state theatres, whereas most countries have a maximum of 5.
Just outside Vienna, you can visit the Vienna Woods region with its wine taverns, which add charm to this destination.