Foreign tourist arrivals to Turkey rise sharply in June, hit nearly 3.5 million
AA photoThe number of foreign tourists visiting Turkey rose 43 percent in June to nearly 3.5 million with a 1.573 percent year-on-year increase of arrivals from Russia, official data has shown.
The sharp rise in June follows a turnaround in tourism numbers in April, when the number of foreign visitors rose for the first time in nearly two years. Tourism, which adds about $30 billion to gross domestic product each year, was hit by a diplomatic crisis, a coup attempt last July and a spate of bombings, which scared away tourists over the past year.
According to data from the Culture and Tourism Ministry, which was released on Aug. 1, a total of 763,727 Russians visited Turkey in June with a sharp increase from the same period in 2016.
Nearly 1.4 million tourists from Europe visited Turkey in June with a 0.6 percent increase compared to the same period in 2016.
Arrivals from Europe plummeted in June 2016, declining from 2.2 million in the same month in 2015.
Russia became the top tourist market for Turkey in June with the country taking a 21.9 percent share in total arrivals, followed by Germany, Iran, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
A total of 12.3 million foreigners arrived in Turkey in the first half of the year with a 14 percent year-on-year increase. The country saw an 820 percent year-on-year increase in the number of arrivals from Russia with 1.69 million Russians visiting Turkey in the first half.
A total of 4.8 million Europeans arrived in Turkey in the first six months of the year with a 12.7 percent year-on-year decrease.
In the first half of the year, Russia again became the largest tourism market with a share of 13.8 percent in total arrivals. Russia was followed by Germany, Georgia, Iran and Bulgaria in this period.
Turkey’s tourism revenue has shown strong recovery in the second quarter of the year after a tough period amid a series of problems, according to the official data on July 31.
In the second quarter of the year, the country’s tourism revenue rose to $5.4 billion with an 8.7 percent year-on-year increase, according to data from the Turkish Statistic Institute (TÜİK).