Press Releases


Record number of visits in 2004 with 75,000 people

01/01/2005 This figure shows a 15% rise with regard to the previous year and the trend indicates 100,000 visitors in 2005.

01/01/2005 Santa María Cathedral closed 2004 with a total of 74,871 visits, which is a 15% rise with regard to the previous year and a record figure since the guided visits were started in 2000. The trend indicates that over this year the figure of 100,000 visitors could be reached, as long as the volume of the works allows it. When the limestone injections in the foundations are started, alternative routes to the walkway will have to be set out.

The data confirms that the project has gained national and international recognition. Regarding this area, the presence of visitors from outside of the Basque Country and foreign visitors - 59 different countries are represented - is on the increase with 36.4% (27,253) and 9.8% (7,337), respectively.

The number of Basque visitors has risen to 40,281, which represents 53.8%, of which 30.8% (23,060) correspond to Alava, whilst Biscay and Gipuzkoa represent 12% (8,985) and 11% (8,236), respectively. The visits are given in Spanish, Basque, English, French, German and Italian. The visits made in Basque represent 11%.

For 2005, there are already several thousand bookings; however, this does not mean those who would like to visit the Old Cathedral cannot do so whenever they like; the visits service works with the greatest flexibility. As an example, we can mention that throughout 2004 more than 1,000 extra groups were attended.

The Santa María Cathedral Foundation would like to thank Caja Vital Kutxa for its collaboration as the sponsor of the guided visits since they were opened to the public in 2000. The economic support received contributes to converting Santa María Cathedral in an international reference for cultural tourism and to spreading the news of the restoration of this heritage amongst the citizens.