As record numbers of migrants and refugee reach the shores of southern and eastern Europe, there are concerns that the refugee crisis is hitting Greece's lucrative tourism sector.
A total of 218,394 migrants made the dangerous trip across the Mediterranean Sea to Europe last month — not far off the 219,000 that arrived during the entirety of 2014, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said on Monday.
The vast majority of migrants (or 96 percent) crossing the Mediterranean in October landed in Greece — all but around 8,000, the refugee agency said.
Greece's Aegean Islands to the east of the mainland have felt the brunt of much of the influx, with the island of Lesbos most affected. These islands and the coast of mainland Greece are lined with tourist resorts, leading to concerns about the impact on one of the country's most important industries.
"The impact on the economy of the islands is very big...Most of these islands live from tourism, so there is a fear that tourism will go lower because of the immigrants that flowing into the islands," George Xatzimarkos, governor of Greece's Southern Aegean Islands, told CNBC on Monday.
Tourism accounts for about 20 percent of Greece's total gross domestic product, according to Elena Kountoura, the country's alternate minister of tourism for Greece. She said tourism numbers had grown this year, despite migrant inflows and the troubles earlier this summer as the country grappled with a debt crisis and impending bailout.
Kountoura said that while 22 million tourists visited Greece in 2014, projections showed 25 million tourism arrivals for 2015 — which would set a national record.