CATALONIA.- A favorite tourist destination. A Family Tourism, a rising segment.
05 Jun 2017

CATALONIA.- A favorite tourist destination. A Family Tourism, a rising segment.


The Statistics on Foreign Tourism in Catalonia provides monthly and annual data on the number of foreign visitors (tourists and day-trippers) whose primary destination of their trip is Catalonia.

The number of foreign tourists arriving in Catalonia increased by 16.8% on the year–over–year data for April 2017. According to the country of habitual residence, among the majority countries of origin, registered positives year-on-year variation: France (11.4%) and Italy (16.0%); while showed a negative year-on-year rate United Kingdom (−3.9%) and Germany (−0.3%).

On the other hand, according to the reason for the trip, leisure and holiday increased by 24.6% while professional reasons decreased (−42.9%). As for the principal type of accommodation, market accommodation grew by 15.2% and non-market accommodation grew by 23,3%.

The interactive consultation of this statistic allows crossing of the following variables: way of entry, type of traveller, reason for travelling, type of accommodation, length of trip, and country of residence. It is also publishing the year-over-year variation of each variable. The data reference period is considered to be the month the trip ends, regardless of its length.


Family tourist experiences.

Catalonia is a destination that your family will remember fondly, thanks to the many experiences you will have together. In Catalonia, families have many things to do: in the summer or winter, at the beach or in the mountains.

Catalonia is a safe bet. Family beaches are adapted to your needs, certified by officials of the Catalan Tourist Board (ACT). They have services, lifeguard stations if someone gets hurt, showers to clean off sand before going home and, best of all, they have beach bars.

Another advantage of these beaches is their Blue Flag certification, which guarantees the environmental quality of the water. It is always reassuring to know that your children are swimming in clean water while they are doing water sports.







Nature is better with family

If you like the outdoors, nature and the mountains of Catalonia, we offer many opportunities to explore it and include all the services you may need when you travel with children.

To give you an idea: there are landscapes with a beautiful and biodiverse natural environment, both flora and fauna. This turns them into places where you can enjoy nature. In addition, there are entertainment options adapted to children of different ages: educational centres, adventure sports, freshwater water sports centres, ski resorts and  accommodation with family rooms equipped with safety bars and soft mats in play areas.

The Catalan Tourist Board (ACT) awards the Family Holiday labels of approval to distinguish towns that are particularly sensitive to this market segment, providing facilities and services adapted to the needs of families with children.

These towns are certified as providing accommodation, catering, leisure and free time facilities for younger visitors. Once verified by ACT inspectors, resorts are awarded the Family Beach or Nature and Mountain Holiday labels of approval to certify that they provide such services and amenities.

There are currently 22 certified destinations in Catalonia that have been awarded these specialised labels with the Family Tourist Brand.


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The pleasure of traveling - El Placer de Viajar - AVANT GRUP

FAMILY TOURIST. A new proposal

Empresa Autocares Barcelona

A trip around Catalonia is full of surprises.This is a small region that you can travel easily.

You will find all you need to travel with your family in Catalonia: magnificent natural environments, good weather, cities and specialised companies where your child can have a good time.
We highlight some areas to visit in the inside of Catalonia.

La Plana de Vic plain, and the river Ter surrounded by mountains. Places with interesting names waiting to be discovered, such as; Gesbisaura, the Collsacabra region, Savassona, Les Guilleries, the Montseny or the Lluçanès region. The Montseny Natural Park, Montesquiu Castle Park and Les Guilleries-Savassona Natural Space are just some examples of the many protected areas containing natural beauty. Here, and in other places, you will be able to enjoy many activities that allow you to discover nature and its beauties year round.


Routes – itineraries

If you’re travelling with children to Catalonia, on this part of the Mediterranean coast, you’ll find tourist destinations offering specially adapted leisure facilities and services. These are certified with the DTF (Family Tourism Destination) mark.

This mark distinguishes the destinations offering a series of services and facilities expressly designed to meet the needs of people travelling with children. You’ll discover, for example, that there are crèches on the beaches, as well as staffed parks and kids’ clubs on the promenades. And it goes without saying that there are also a host of fun activities, In these places the enjoyment of a wide variety of leisure and entertainment options is indispensable.

The nature of the Catalan Pyrenees is the reflection of its people’s outlook, which contributes to forging the character, culture and tradition of this land.

Natural parks and reserves in which you will find total paradise. Rich and varied flora and fauna right from the easternmost side, next to the Mediterranean, to the westernmost point.

The Pyrenees are first and foremost beauty, a unique area where nature has spared no effort in scattering the charms of paradise.

The Pyrenees is home to the Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici National Park, several natural parks.

  • ALT PIRINEU NATURAL PARK.- Alt Pirineu Natural Park is the largest of its kind in Catalonia. It covers an area of nearly 70,000 hectares, spanning Pallars Sobirà and Alt Urgell Counties.
  • AIGÜESTORTES NATIONAL PARK.- Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici National Park, the only National Park in Catalonia, is located in an area spanning Pallars Sobirà, Alta Ribagorça, Pallars Jussà, and Val d’Aran Counties.


The European Commission proposing to set up an automated system that would gather information on visa-exempt travellers prior to their arrival, in order to determine any irregular migration, security or public-health risks associated with them. The proposal follows similar models already existing in the USA, Canada and Australia, among others.

The ETIAS (EU Travel Information and Authorisation System) will gather information on all travellers who are travelling visa free to Europe and ensure that possible security concerns are identified prior to travelling to the Schengen area, contributing to a more efficient management of the EU’s external borders and improving internal security and the security of EU citizens



The ETIAS authorization is not a visa. In fact, it is an electronic authorization that allows visa-free nationals to board a carrier to travel to Schengen Area. The difference between an ETIAS authorization and an EU visa is that the process of the former is automated and centralized across the Schengen Area whereas an EU visa is processed on a case-by-case basis by the visa officers of each Member State. The ETIAS system is similar to the ESTA of USA or the eTA of Canada.

ETIAS is part of an EU intergovernmental legislative initiative created to enforce the security of the Member States. It is set to commence starting in 2020. It is an immigration process used to address the potential threats before ineligible individuals cross the borders of the EU. ETIAS together with EES (Entry-Exit System) will speed up, facilitate, reinforce and modernize the border control procedures by offering better protections against document and identity frauds. ETIAS is an early indication as to whether or not an EU visa-exempt traveler is admissible into the Schengen Area. This will considerably reduce the number of refusals of entry.




Currently, there are a significant number of countries whose citizens are permitted to enter the EU and Schengen member countries without the need to obtain a visa. These visitors are limited to a 3 month stays and their visit is supposed to be for the purposes of tourism or business. There are restrictions whereby visa free travellers are not permitted to work or to study. However, these travellers will require an ETIAS to travel to Europe for tourism, business or transit purposes.

By implementing ETIAS, the EU Commission intends to improve the security of the Schengen area primarily requiring these visa-free travellers to obtain travel authorisation and undergo various security checks prior to their arrival to the EU.

Each citizen from the visa-free countries needs to hold a valid ETIAS prior to boarding.