Antalya eyes over 10 million tourists in 2017
If no “negative developments” occur, the Mediterranean resort of Antalya will likely close this year with more than 10 million local and foreign tourists, Antalya Governor Münir Karaloğlu told state-run Anadolu Agency on Aug. 23.
Although 2016 was a very tough year for Antalya’s tourism, this year has seen an uptick in figures, Karaloğlu said.
“We will likely attract nearly 10.5 million tourists this year if no negative incident occurs,” he added.
Karaloğlu said the number of arrivals to the resort rose by 65 percent by mid-August compared to the same period of 2016.
The resort has thus hosted nearly 6.5 million tourists over the course of this year.
“The extension of the public holiday for the Eid al-Adha [Feast of Sacrifice] to 10 days is of great importance for reviving Turkey’s local tourism. We have needed to fill our gap in foreign tourists with local tourists,” he said, adding that hotel occupancy rates during the 10-day holiday would hit 100 percent. The revival in Antalya’s tourism sector also makes great contribution to the resort’s two other key sectors: The agricultural and commercial sectors, Karaloğlu also said.
The number of foreign arrivals to Antalya declined to just 6 million in 2016, a 43 percent fall compared to 2015, mainly due to Turkey’s bilateral crisis with Russia and rising security problems.