Türkiye’s picturesque Cappadocia region has attracted over 2.5 million tourists in the first eight months of this year, breaking its all-time record, according to official figures.
More than 2.54 million domestic and international visitors came to explore the charming touristic hub, famed for its distinctive fairy chimneys, underground cities, cave hotels, and hot air balloon rides.
The number of tourists nearly doubled compared to January-August of last year, soaring 98%.
Talip Aldemir, an official from the Turkish Travel Agencies Association, told Anadolu Agency that tourist density was seen in all areas, from accommodation facilities in the region to agencies, from companies that organize activities to other tourism components.
Stressing that they had a productive tourism season this year, he said they expect an even busier 2023 and 2024 thanks to the expanding market range.
“We saw 2019 as a year of records, and we had expected more visitors in 2020. Unfortunately, the pandemic affected Cappadocia as well as the whole world. The year 2022 brought a smile to the face of tourism professionals,” he said.
Cappadocia is one of the world’s most unique regions, and has been home to many civilizations, he added.
The region, located in Central Anatolia's Nevsehir province, has been preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1985.
Muzaffer Buyukbas, who owns a local tourism agency, said that after the last two years of COVID-19 measures, recently there has been a leap in the number of people traveling and that Cappadocia is in great demand.
“We surpassed the golden year of 2019 (in tourist numbers), which we targeted after the pandemic. Reservations are very good at the moment. This busy period will continue until early November,” he said.