Number of EU visitors to Turkey soars

15th May 2012

Turkey offers holidaymakers a perfect mix of sun and sand and history and culture and its appeal is clearly having an impact upon Europeans.

That's according to official statistics anyway, which show that the number of people visiting from EU countries has increased three-fold in the past decade.

Turkey's tourism minister Ertugrul Gunay announced the figures, saying that EU tourists now account for more than half of the country's total.

The figures showed the number of people travelling to Turkey from the EU went from 6.5 million 12 years ago to 18 million in 2011.

The news comes as many people will be preparing to jet off to destinations such as Antalya, which was recently recognised for its high number of Blue Flag beaches.

Gunay revealed the figures at a meeting of the European Parliament in Brussels.

He said: "With 31.4 million tourists, Turkey has in 2011 been the sixth destination worldwide and has increased its sector by 9.8%.

"A large portion of these tourists is made up of EU member state citizens."

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