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More tourists over the holidays

This New Year’s Eve 3,300 tourists will be checked in at hotels and hostels in Reykjavík, which is a 10 percent increase from New Year’s Eve 2005.

Erna Hauksdóttir, head of the Icelandic Travel Industry Association, told Morgunbladid that tourists are coming in increasing numbers to watch the fireworks on December 31.

This year, 1,200 tourists stayed in Reykjavík on Christmas Day, which is a 50 percent increase from Christmas 2005.

Hauksdóttir said the growth in tourism over the holidays is caused by the increased marketing of hotels and travel agencies.

Hauksdóttir said there is enough for tourists to do in Iceland over the holidays, although stores and restaurants close in the afternoon of Christmas Eve and stay closed on Christmas Day.

Travel agencies offer day trips on these days to areas near the capital, so tourists can visit Gullfoss waterfall and hot spring Geysir, among other things.

Most tourists to Iceland over Christmas come from Russia, Japan, Scandinavia and the US. Hauksdóttir said Russian and Japanese tourists are growing in numbers.

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