FIO reached a record number of 21,049 unique visitors at its 12th edition, held from 24-26 February. This is the first time that the General Directorate of Tourism, organizer of the event, has used an automatic digital device that quantifies the number of people attending the fair (unique visitors, i. e., the journeys made by the person during their visit are not taken into account). This system allows us to specify the statisticians, since in previous years different estimates have been used, such as the number of vehicles that enter the National Park during the three days of the fair. According to these estimates, visitor figures ranged from 10,000 to 13,000 visitors per FIO edition.
According to the technology used this year, the day with the largest number of visitors was Saturday, February 25th, with 9,451 unique visitors.
FIO recorded broad public participation in all programmed activities.
The trading exchange, an activity aimed exclusively at professionals, registered 464 business meetings between 71 sellers and 28 buyers from Spain, the United Kingdom, France, Holland, Italy, Switzerland, the United States and Sri Lanka.
The conferences and workshops on nature photography (FOTOFIO) were attended by a total of 1,288 people, while the technical conferences on topics such as tourism, conservation projects and innovation were attended by 613 people.
Around 700 people signed up for the different guided hiking routes, by bus or for people with reduced mobility.
A total of 777 children (489 on Saturday alone) participated in FIO’s children’s workshops, including the elaboration of animal figures, paperweights of bird silhouettes, games and walks around Villarreal de San Carlos.
One of the novelties of this year was the astrotourism, taking advantage of the fact that Mofragüe has received the Starlight tourist destination certificate that guarantees suitable conditions to contemplate the night sky. For this reason, an inflatable astronomical observatory was set up, where videos of different places in Extremadura were shown, ideal for observing the stars. In total, 806 people witnessed these images in 360 degrees.
In addition, about 100 people participated in a night session with a robotic telescope on Friday, February 24, and another 84 people attended an astronomical and interpretive route of the night and its birds on Saturday, February 25.
FIO 2017 was also a record-breaking event in the nature photography contest’ Wild Birds’, with 2,215 images submitted.