Tourism in Andalusia has served as an important lesson in the region's history for its economic importance, social relevance and environmental impact. Throughout the year, Andalusia is visited by thousands of tourists from other areas of Spain as well as other countries. Many of these tourists from other countries are from the European Union, particularly the UK, Germany, France, Italy and Scandinavian countries.
With almost 30 million visitors a year to main destinations in the region such as the Costa del Sol and Sierra Nevada, Andalusia is fourth in the rankings list of autonomous communities regarding the number of visitors received, beaten only by Catalonia, the Balearic Islands and the Canaries.
Andalusia's location in the south of the Iberian Peninsula make it one of the warmest places in Europe. The Mediterranean climate dominates the region and provides a large number of hours of sun. This, along with the area's extensive beaches, affords Andalusia the ideal conditions for the development of sun and beach tourism.
The coast is the most important area regarding tourism although this does mean there are a few risks to it due to the high usage it receives.
There is a high, regional concentration of the Andalusian tourism sector here, meaning it is also the coastal area where there is more pressure from tourism. 75% of the total number of overnight stays in lodging establishments in Andalusia are in coastal municipalities. Logically, it is here where you can find the largest number of tourist accommodation establishments (more than 70% of regulated establishments are located along the coast).
Demand is highest in the month of August, with 13.26% of the year's overnight stays, while the month of December receives the least tourists,with 5.36%.
Andalusia's 836km of coast are bathed by the Atlantic Ocean in the west - where you will find the Costa de la Luz (Huelva and Cadiz) - and by the Mediterranean Sea for the rest of it. This stretch of coast is divided into the Costa del Sol (Malaga and part of Cadiz), the Costa Tropical (Granada and part of Almeria) and the Costa de Almeria). The whole coast is well preserved: evident through its 84 blue flags that it received in 2004 for its beaches (66) and marinas (18), which confirm their sustainability, accessibility and quality.