Nova Scotia welcomed 2.1 million visitors in 2006, bringing in an estimated $1.31 billion in revenues. Final year-end tourism statistics were released today, Feb. 2. The preliminary revenue estimate is up 1.7 per cent from 2005, and is on par with 2004. There was no change in the number of visitors or room nights sold compared with 2005. Room nights sold varied by region, from a five per cent increase in the Annapolis Valley, to a six per cent decrease on the Eastern Shore. “Nova Scotia’s tourism industry held its ground last year, despite many changes in the global marketplace,” said Len Goucher, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage. “Government and the industry have launched a new tourism plan that identifies our challenges, and outlines new directions to attract more visitors and increase tourism revenues.” Following the national trend, visitation was down eight per cent from the United States in 2006, and two per cent from overseas. One per cent more visitors came to Nova Scotia by air, and there was no change in the number of visitors coming by road. In December 2006, there were three per cent fewer visitors and 12 per cent fewer room nights sold, compared with the same month in 2005. Nova Scotia’s comprehensive system for reporting tourism statistics includes counting overnight visitors — excluding Nova Scotia residents — at all entry points to the province, and gathering the number of room nights sold from licensed accommodation operators. Detailed tourism statistics can be found on the Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage website at www.gov.ns.ca/dtc/pubs/insights .