Page last updated at 04:28 GMT, Tuesday, 1 July 2008 05:28 UK

Millions flock to cultural events

Liver building
The city hopes to break the 5m barrier later this week

Almost 5m visitors have attended events and attractions in Liverpool as part of the city's European Capital of Culture year.

Although only six months into its celebrations, Liverpool's cultural venues have reported unprecedented numbers of visitors.

Tate Liverpool has recorded its busiest month since opening in 1988.

The Albert Docks, which is hosting a major Gustav Klimt exhibition, saw almost 140,000 tourists in June.

It is the first time the venue has broken the 100,000-visitor barrier, making it the city's number one attraction so far in 2008.

National Museums Liverpool's eight sites have seen almost 1.2m people flood through the doors in the first six months of the year with visitor numbers at the Merseyside Maritime Museum up 60% on 2007.

The actual 5m barrier is set to be broken later this week when the city stages a host of events including opera live from The Royal Opera House, the finale of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race on the River Mersey, and a Shakespeare in the City festival.

This month will also see Liverpool and Merseyside stage The Tall Ships' Races, The Open at Royal Birkdale, The Summer Pops festival and the European Youth Parliament, as well as an Arabic arts festival.

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