Hotels in Turkey’s tourism hotspot Antalya and other famous destinations are enjoying strong demand from abroad as foreign tourists have started making reservations for the Christmas and New Year holiday season.
Antalya, located on the Mediterranean coast, has already welcomed more than 9 million foreign tourists this year and is now preparing to host more guests this month who want to take advantage of some 10-day long holiday.
Particularly five-star hotels in the province are receiving reservations from Russia and European countries, and most of them expect their occupancy rates to hit around 100 percent on New Year’s Eve.
Not only hotels in Antalya, but venues in other famous destinations in Turkey, such as Cappadocia and ski resorts, and Northern Cyprus are preparing for a busy holiday season.
Domestic tourism activity is also expected to gain momentum as people are making plans to merge New Year’s Eve with the weekend holiday.
“Hotels in the ski resort at Mount Uludağ in [the northwestern province of] Bursa see strong demand,” said Firuz Bağlıkaya, the chairman of the Association of Turkish Travel Agencies (TÜRSAB).
Cultural tours are also in high demand for destinations such as Diyarbakır, Mardin, Bağlıkaya added.
Bağlıkaya also noted that some locals are also making reservations for foreign destinations, including tours for Balkan countries, particularly Belgrade, as well as Kyiv and Dubai.
Many hotels, which will be open on New Year’s Eve,are fully booked already, said Ülkay Atmaca, the chair of the Professional Hotel Managers’ Association (POYD).
This year domestic tourists mostly prefer local destinations on New Year’s holiday because the depreciation of the Turkish Lira makes such trips more expensive, Atmaca explained.
“Demand from both local and international holidaymakers is strong; guests from Europe and Russia are already arriving. This will be a good New Year’s [holiday season],” Atmaca said.