Turkey attracts more tourists despite regional, local crises
Umut ERDEM ANKARA – Hürriyet
The Culture and Tourism Ministry said 34.9 million foreign tourists visited Turkey last year, while the number was 31.7 million in 2012. AA photoThe number of foreign tourists visiting Turkey increased by 10 percent in 2013 compared to the previous year, despite the high tensions in neighboring Syria and Iraq and the political turmoil.
The Culture and Tourism Ministry said 34.9 million foreign tourists visited Turkey last year, while the number was 31.7 million in 2012.
“We are one of the top countries in the world with potential for tourism,” Culture and Tourism Minister Ömer Çelik said, adding Turkey’s tourism is on the rise, despite the regional and local crises.
The numbers include Turks living in Europe who spend their holidays in Turkey. More than 4.5 million Turks residing abroad visited Turley in 2013.
Turkey was the sixth most popular destination in the world last year and Turkey’s southern city Antalya beat all records by attracting 12 million visitors, according to figures from the U.N. and Turkey’s Culture and Tourism office.
Three million Russians and two million Germans visited Antalya, a city of one million last year.
Fifty-two million more people travelled the world in 2013 when compared to 2012 according to the U.N. World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), an organization which monitors trends in international tourism.
France attracted more tourists than any other country in the world, while the United States came in second place, with China, Spain and Italy completing the top five most visited countries.