(S.F. Examiner file photo)

(S.F. Examiner file photo)

Visitors to Golden Gate National Parks led to $471 million in local spending

The estimated 17 million visitors to Golden Gate National Parks in 2012 contributed approximately $471 million in spending in surrounding communities, according to a National Park Service report.

Visitor spending associated with tourism at the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, Fort Point National Historic Site and Muir Woods National Monument supported 5,300 jobs in local communities, mostly in the hospitality and retail industries, the report found.

“The Golden Gate National Parks, with 17 million annual visitors, are the most visited in the National Park System,” General Superintendent Frank Dean said. “We are proud to welcome visitors from around the world, and are delighted to share the story of these special places and the many different experiences they offer, from horseback riding, beach combing and hiking to surfing and world-class sightseeing.”

Dean noted that national park tourism is a significant driver in both the national and local economy, returning $10 for every $1 invested in the National Park Service.

The Park Service saw more than 282 million recreation visits in 2012, which led to $14.7 billion in direct spending in communities within 60 miles of a national park, the report said.

That spending supported 243,000 jobs nationwide and created a cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy of $26.75 billion, according to the report. Most of the spending contributed to jobs in restaurants and grocery and convenience stores.

“We appreciate the partnership and support of our neighbors and are glad to be able to give back by helping to sustain local communities,” Dean said.Bay Area NewsFort Point National Historic SiteGolden Gate National ParksGolden Gate National Recreation Area

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