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    Museum attendance in Québec in 2021: still far from the pre-pandemic average

    Québec, December 14, 2022. – In 2021, there were 6.8 million visitors to museum institutions in Québec. This number was up 72% from the 3.9 million admissions in 2020. Still, the result for 2021 remains far below the 2015–2019 average, which was 15.2 million admissions. This was revealed in the bulletin La fréquentation des institutions muséales en 2021. It presents the latest annual results on the number of admissions to museums, exhibition centres and interpretation sites.

    Popularity of science museums and history, ethnology and archeology interpretation sites

    Among the different categories of museum institutions, science museums (2.2 million) and history, ethnology and archeology interpretation sites (1.5 million) had the largest number of admissions in 2021.

    In 2021, admissions to museum institutions overall were 55% lower than the 2015–2019 average. Science museums experienced a more modest decline (-35%), while art museums recorded the sharpest drop (-72%).

    Distribution of intramural attendance1 by type of museum institution, Québec, 2021

    Art museums: 9%; Exhibition centers: 4%; Science museums: 36%; Science interpretation sites: 9%; History, ethnology and archeology interpretation museums: 18%; History, ethnology and archeology interpretation sites: 24%.

    1. Number of on-site admissions to museum institutions.

    Institut de la statistique du Québec, Observatoire de la culture et des communications du Québec.

    Regional picture

    In 2021, the regions that recorded attendance levels closest to their 2015–2019 average were Côte-Nord and Nord-du-Québec (+7%) and Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine (-17%). In four regions, admissions declined more than the provincial average (-55%): Outaouais
    (-91%), Mauricie (-65%), Montréal (-63%), and Capitale-Nationale (-58%).

    Among the 30 most visited institutions, 12 are located on the Montréal Island, 6 in the Capitale-Nationale region, and the remaining 12 are distributed among eight other Québec administrative regions.

    School visitors lag behind

    Despite the relaxation of health rules and a general increase in admissions, school visitors to museum institutions continued to decrease, going from 181,000 admissions in 2020 to 173,000 in 2021, far below the average annual number of admissions recorded between 2015 and 2019 (903,140).


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    The Institut de la statistique du Québec produces, analyzes and disseminates official, objective and quality statistical information on various aspects of Québec society. It is responsible for conducting all statistical surveys of general interest. The relevance of its work makes it a strategic ally for decision makers and all those wishing to learn more about Québec.

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