Russian tourist numbers to Turkey skyrocket in January but foreign arrivals keep declining
The number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey soared 81.5 percent in January compared to the same month of 2016, although foreign arrivals to the country continued to decline, official data has showed.
According to preliminary data released by the Tourism Ministry on Feb. 28, some 40,124 Russians visited Turkey in January.
Russia thus ranked fifth in the top source of tourists for Turkey, following Georgia, Iran, Germany and Bulgaria.
In 2016, the number of arrivals from Russia into Turkey regressed to 866,256 overall, a 76.2 percent drop from the previous year amid the diplomatic crisis between the two countries.
A total of 3.65 million Russians visited Turkey in 2015 and 4.5 million in 2014.
More than 1 million foreign tourists visited Turkey in January, with Istanbul seeing the highest number of entrances, according to official data. Istanbul was followed by the Black Sea province of Artvin, neighboring Georgia, and the northwestern province of Edirne, neighboring Greece and Bulgaria.