29,220,847 overnight stays have been booked in Belgium in 2021. That is a 45% increase compared to 2020, but still a 31% decrease compared to 2019.
This is what emerged from the new annual figures about tourist arrivals and overnight stays in Belgium from Statbel, the Belgian statistical office. Figures are published at the level of Belgium, regions and provinces. These tables also show the countries of origin and the type of accommodation (hotel, holiday park, holiday home, etc.).
The increase was the smallest in the Brussels-Capital Region with an increase of 33% compared to 2020. Compared to 2019 there is still a significant decrease (-68%).
In the Walloon Region, there was a 37% increase compared to 2020 and a 20% decrease compared to 2019. The Flemish Region registered an increase of 50% compared to 2020 and a decrease of 25% compared to 2019.
Number of overnight stays per region (2016-2021)
In each province, the number of overnight stays increased in 2021 compared to 2020, but there is still a decrease compared to 2019.
Number of overnight stays per province (2016-2021)
|Province of Antwerp||4,241,787||4,333,706||4,864,460||4,912,144||2,056,957||2,984,935|
|Province of Flemish Brabant||1,843,751||2,030,847||2,295,796||2,348,709||805,360||1,076,461|
|Province of Walloon Brabant||429,537||479,080||488,009||507,424||196,377||317,903|
|Province of West Flanders||11,651,144||11,776,860||12,182,123||12,117,431||6,843,417||10,573,285|
|Province of East Flanders||2,015,947||2,264,035||2,454,113||2,565,512||1,164,263||1,673,154|
|Province of Hainaut||1,183,443||1,225,305||1,296,905||1,337,620||677,447||985,025|
|Province of Liège||2,341,931||2,412,971||2,468,194||2,590,225||1,553,652||2,069,236|
|Province of Limburg||4,142,265||4,105,887||4,330,127||4,413,067||2,406,418||3,551,574|
|Province of Luxembourg||2,565,695||2,417,871||2,733,464||2,881,127||1,902,634||2,516,831|
|Province of Namur||1,229,219||1,295,569||1,214,032||1,410,870||788,088||1,101,507|
Hotels were the most impacted by the Covid-19 crisis with a 47% decrease compared to 2019. Holiday parks and youth hostels remained also seriously affected with decreases of 33% and 37% compared to 2019.
In camping sites, they were again as many overnight stays in 2021 as in 2019.
Hotels remained the most popular accommodation category in 2021 with 37% of overnight stays, followed by gîtes, holiday homes and apartments with 23%.
In 2021, there were still fewer overnight stays of foreign tourists than in 2019 (-63%). The number of overnight stays of domestic tourists is again at the same level as in 2019.
In 2021, domestic tourists accounted for 73% of overnight stays.
Distribution of the number of overnight stays according to the country of origin
Holiday parks and camping sites had to close from 3 November 2020 to 7 February 2021. Hotels and B&Bs could stay open, but restaurants and bars had to close. Meals had to be taken in the room.
As of 8 February, holiday villages and camping sites were allowed to reopen but their pools, common indoor areas and facilities such as restaurants and bars had to remain closed.
On 8 May 2021, outdoor cafés were allowed to reopen. From 9 June 2021 horeca inside was also allowed.
Swimming pools were allowed to reopen on 8 May 2021. In practice, this was often not (yet) the case in holiday parks due to the 1.5 metre rule.
Camps and school trips with overnight stays have not been allowed until June 2021 included. Indoor playgrounds, subtropical swimming pools and recreational parts of swimming pools had to close from 26 December 2021 to 27 January 2022. This had an impact on holiday parks.
Sports camps were only allowed to take place without overnight stays from 26 December 2021.
 From 2019 onwards, Statbel no longer publishes municipal figures. For figures at a more detailed level than the provinces, please contact: Toerisme Vlaanderen , Commissariat général au Tourisme or BISA
The figures for this category are based on a sample selected at provincial level, except for the coast, where figures are provided by real estate agencies.