Almost one million people visited the plant, 16% more than in 2015.
In the year that Itaipu resumed world leadership in energy production, tourism was also historic:954,572 visitors passed through the tourist attractions of Itaipu in 2016, setting a new record.The number surpasses the 952,356 registered visitors in 2013, coincidentally the same year of the plant’s previous production record.The visitation of 2016 is also 16% higher than that of 2015, considering the two types of visits (institutional and tourist) with entry by the two countries (Brazil and Paraguay).
“Itaipu is a record company and this was proven in 2016. The prospect of the world record for power generation has driven the increase in the number of visitors,” said Itaipu Social Communication superintendent Gilmar Piolla.According to him, the campaigns to publicize the tourism of the plant and the Iguaçu Destination also helped to boost the visitation.
In Itaipu, the highlight of 2016 was the Bela Vista Biological Refuge (RBV), which grew 82% in relation to 2015. One of the novelties in Itaipu tourism last year was “Meu Refúgio” campaign, by mountaineer Waldemar Niclevicz.The action encourages tourists to symbolically plant seeds of trees native to the region.The seedlings will be used in the Itaipu reforestation program, the largest in the world by a hydroelectric plant.
In total, 522,003 people visited all the attractions of the Brazilian Riviera Tourist Complex – Special Circuit, Ecomuseum, Dam Lighting, Panoramic Tour, Astronomical Hub, Kattamaram Port, Electric Vehicle Test Drive and Biological Refuge.The number is almost the same as in 2015. In December, the “Itaipu em dose dupla” promotion, which included a panoramic tour in the plant combined with the Kattamaran tour, increased visitor attraction by 18%.
On the Paraguayan side, the reopening of the Guarani Land Museum increased visits to the neighboring country’s tourist complex by 96%.There were 207,430 tourists entering the Paraguayan border, almost 67,000 of them visited the Guarani Museum, which was closed in 2015. Other highlights were the Reduced Dam Model, with a high of 88%, and the Tati Yupí Biological Refuge (50%).
The institutional visitation (the one attended by Itaipu itself and made to school, student groups and professionals) from the Brazilian bank attracted 46,198 visitors, an increase of 38% compared to 2015, or almost 13,000 more people.This increase reflects an improvement in the flow of visitors inside and outside the plant.The institutional visits of the Paraguayan margin had an increase of 11%.
Brazilians and Paraguayans
As expected, Brazilians (54.32%) and Paraguayans (32%) were the ones that visited Itaipu most in 2016. In third place was Argentina (5.75%), followed by Uruguay (1.03%).Germans, Peruvians, Chileans, Chinese, Americans and Spaniards complete the list of 10 nationalities with the largest number of tourists in the binational attractions.