Over 1.72 million visitors at the Auschwitz Memorial in 2015
Over 1.72 million people visited the Auschwitz Memorial in 2015. Never before in the space of a single year have so many people familiarized themselves at first hand with the significance of the space of the former German Nazi concentration and extermination camp.
Within the top ten countries from which our visitors come are: Poland (425 thousand), the United Kingdom (220 thousand), the United States (141 thousand), Germany (93 thousand), Italy (76 thousand), Spain (68 thousand), Israel (61 thousand), France (57 thousand), Czech Republic (47 thousand) and the Netherlands (43 thousand)
In 2015, the number of visitors from South America (51 per cent) and North America (39 per cent) increased significantly. In comparison with the previous years, an important increase in the number of visitors from the following countries was observed: Ireland (57 per cent), Hungary (56 per cent), as well as China (36 per cent) and Germany (24 per cent)
“Going through the remnants of the former camp does not constitute only a history lesson. It is also the moment of unique reflection on our own responsibility for the shape of our world nowadays. That is why systematic tools supporting educational visits of young people at the Memorial have been created in so many democratic countries”, said Dr. Piotr M.A. Cywiński, director of the Museum.
Visitors to the Auschwitz Memorial have the opportunity to see both parts of the former camp: Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau. The decided majority of the visitors to the Memorial, i.e. almost 80 per cent, are guided by Museum educators in one of nearly 20 languages available.
“Appropriate preparation and training of nearly 300 educators constitutes a challenge taking into account dynamically changing attendance of visitors from different language areas. Last year, we introduced among others the option of a thorough visit (up to 6 hours) for individual visitors. It includes among others a visit to reserve blocks 2 and 3, the interior of which has been preserved almost intact since the liberation of the camp”, emphasized Andrzej Kacorzyk, director of the International Center for Education about Auschwitz and the Holocaust.
In order to create the best possible visiting conditions, special online booking service visit.auschwitz.org has been launched. For safety reasons, limits concerning maximum number of visitors beginning their tour at a given hour have been introduced. Thanks to this solution, such a high attendance does not result in overcrowding.
The highest attendance last year was registered in August – over 210,000 people, the lowest in January – the Memorial was then visited by slightly over 57,000 people.
Besides of guiding huge number of visitors at the authentic Memorial, an important part of the educational activity of the Museum are specialized educational projects. Over 11,000 people from all around the world participated in seminars, conferences or ICEAH study visits in 2015.
The history of Auschwitz evokes also great interest in the media. Every day journalists contact the Museum Press Office searching for historical information as well as facts from the everyday activities of the Memorial. Major challenge of the year 2015 was constituted by the organization of media services during the 70th anniversary of the liberation of KL Auschwitz, covered by ca. 1,000 journalists from all over the world. In addition, last year over 200 professional film crews realized various documentaries on the grounds of the former Nazi German concentration and extermination camp.
Simultaneously, the power of Internet and social media direct broadcasting was increasing. Over 200,000 people have subscribed to regular news published on the Museum Facebook profile, over 15,000 follow the Museum account on Twitter, while 10,000 on Instagram. In 2015, over 25 million visits of the www.auschwitz.org website were recorded.