Over one million visitors arrived in Israel during January-April 2011 – four percent more than the same period last year.

The new figures come in the wake of the Tourism Ministry’s announcement to intensify investments in Israel’s tourism industry.

“The ministry initiated several marketing activities to increase demand for tourism to Israel and will continue with these activities over the coming months,” said Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov. “Marketing activities have succeeded in increasing the number of incoming tourists who stay more than one night in Israel and, as a result, tourism’s percentage of the GDP has grown – revenue from tourism in the period January through April has grown to $940 million, 3% more than the same period last year.”

According to Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics, 226,000 of the tourists arrived by air (6% more than in 2010), of whom 11,000 were tourists arriving on direct flights to Eilat and Ovda for vacation purposes (an impressive increase of 77% more than April 2010). Some 38,000 travelers were day-visitors, of whom 20,000 arrived on cruise ships (double the number for April 2010).