The World-famous Cappadocia region in central Turkey which is home to fabled fairy chimneys and stunning balloon rides welcomed over 60,000 tourists this May, local tourism officials said in a statement Thursday.
According to authorities in the central Nevşehir province, 61,634 people visited 17 top tourist sites in Cappadocia.
With 17,774 visitors, the famed Göreme open-air museum was the most-visited destination in Cappadocia.
It was followed by the Zelve open-air museum, which drew 17,477 visitors, and the underground city of Kaymaklı, which attracted 11,571 visitors, according to the statement.
Cappadocia, which was included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List in 1985, hosts a large number of local and foreign tourists every year. The city famous for its fairy chimneys and balloon tours, is preferred by those eager to spend time among cultural, historical and natural beauties.
Mustafa Durmaz, head of Göreme Tourism Development Cooperative, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that the occupancy rate in accommodation facilities in the region has reached 30% and they expect demand to increase in the upcoming period.
Stating that they expect Cappadocia, where nearly 4 million domestic and foreign tourists visited in 2019, to regain its pre-pandemic fame.
“There is a relative increase in June compared to last year. We expect the number of tourists coming this year to increase by 50% when compared to 2020.”
He added that the number of guests will increase with the rate of vaccination in the following months.
“We believe that tourism in Cappadocia will recover very quickly,” Durmaz added.
Talip Aldemir, Chairperson of the Cappadocia Regional Representative Board of the Turkish Travel Agencies Association (TÜRSAB) also told AA that with the increase in tourism activity during the controlled normalization process, domestic and international bookings began to soar.