Tourism in Turkey
As a well-known tourism destination, Turkey continues to offer great investment opportunities both in entrenched and developing sub-sectors of the industry. Being 6th most popular tourism destination in the world, Turkey is being visited by more than 30 million tourists annually and this number keeps increasing every year.
Dynamic and constant growth in Turkish tourism sector did not get affected from the negative effects of recent global crisis and still holds a great untouched potential in it. With its long beaches and unspoiled coves, breath-taking coastal line which stretches across Aegean and Mediterranean contributes greatly to the rapidly growing sector. In addition to the natural riches, Turkey is birthplace of a great number of civilizations which left great traces in history. Anatolian peninsula hosts a variety of states, kingdoms, empires some of which even predates history itself and countless archeological sites left by a great number of different cultures.
Increasing number of airports (12 new airports in last 5 years), transportation infrastructure investments, rapid rise of Turkish Airlines and state incentives, play a great role in increasing the number of hotel assets. At the moment, 281 projects which will provide 74.130 beds which Turkey needs continue. As Turkey is the world’s 6th most popular tourism destination, a great number of global hotel chains turn their direction to Turkey for growth. By 2014, 15% of them being owned by foreign investors, there are more than 165 hotel chains in Turkey. In 2014, with a 6% increase compared to previous year, tourism revenues became more than $34 billion.
According to Ministry of Culture and Economy data, number of foreign tourists visiting Turkey is 39.8 million in 2014, which means a 5% increase compared to 2013. This number also means a striking 200% increase compared to year 2000. Taking a glance at tourism infrastructure, by the end of 2014, Turkey has 13.436 registered accommodation facilities. While 9188 of these have licenses given by municipalities, the remaining 4248 have tourism operation licenses. Total bed capacity of these facilities is above 1.250.000. While it is among the first 7 countries in the world in terms of geothermal tourism potential, Turkey has the highest number of hot springs (1500) in Europe. Total bed capacity in various thermal spa centres is 55.140.
- Tourism sector aims for 50 million touristic visits and $50 billion tourism income.
- Turkey’s growth in tourism industry in recent years is above the global average and the industry’s direct contribution to the gross national product has reached to $34 billion in 2014.
- Turkey, which has 7200 km of coastal line, is the second best among 38 countries with its blue flag beaches. Turkey has 22 blue flag marinas.