The uptake of a seasonal marketing strategy has been pointed to as a major reason behind a "particularly strong" end to the winter tourism season.
The latest monthly Commercial Accommodation Monitor (CAM) published by Statistics New Zealand showed Hawke's Bay experienced an overall increase of 11 per cent - or 7000 guest nights - compared with August 2017 – good enough for the fifth largest increase among 32 recorded regions in New Zealand.
Hawke's Bay Tourism general manager Annie Dundas said the number of domestic visitors to the region grew by 12.2 per cent in August.
Among other measures, the average length of stay went from 2.06 to 2.38 nights, while total occupancy increased 6.3 per cent.
"August's bumper performance contributed to winter 2018 recording an overall guest night increase of 7.3 per cent year-on-year, all the more impressive considering Winter 2017 included a strong international visitor bump courtesy of the tour by the British & Irish Lions."
The CAM figures add to further good news in the latest Regional Tourism Estimates, from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, which estimated that tourists in September spent $39 million around the region.
That was a rise of 5 per cent on the same month last year and an 8 per cent rise on the amount visitors spent the previous month.
Dundas said varying factors were behind the increases including an effective seasonal marketing strategy and a wide variety of winter events.