From January to May this year, the Ege Port located in Kusadasi, in the Aegean province of Aydin played host to forty cruise ships in total. Due to this, Ege Port is currently ranked as the number one port in Turkey with regards to the number of passengers and number of ships entering and exiting the country.
Tourist numbers in Kusadasi
Ege Port has become a top destination for luxurious cruise ships and has welcomed 29,498 tourists in the first five months of this year, according to data. This is an additional six cruise ships from the same time last year and approximately 7,000 more tourists. In addition to this, there were six cruisers docked in Marmaris, plus one ship in both Dikili and Bodrum.
Why take a cruise in Turkey?
Aziz Gungor the General manager of the Aegean Port explained that Turkey is a colourful country and is receiving more and more cruise tourism. It is thanks to this that the industry has made a significant recovery in recent years.
Gungor went on to confirm that by the end of the cruise season they expect to have hosted 185,000 passengers from 198 cruise ships. With the current bookings already in place for 2020, experts are forecasting in excess of 300 cruise ships transporting 350,000 tourists to the area through 2020.
Turkey’s continual tourism growth
There has been a huge upturn with regards to cruise tourism Turkey, and experts suggest that this is because Turkey offers natural beauty and more history than North African countries and the West Mediterranean. It has been confirmed that about three million passengers have arrived in Turkey by cruise ship since 2015. Gungor added that: “The industry has slightly declined in recent years but will continue to grow as of 2019. We believe that we will see three million cruise passengers in Turkey again in the next two years. We can say that we have left the bad days behind in the cruise sector as of 2019. We believe that it will continue to rise from now on.”
Tradesmen’s point of view
Tradesmen Efe Esen explained that he has seen true recovery in the sector this year following a number of challenging years. Esen said that the additional number of cruises provide tradesmen with much needed revenue. “This pleases tradesmen in the province. We did not give up during the challenging process. We struggled but never lost hope. 2019 brought us hope.”
Another tradesmen, Habidder Kekec explained how much the country has been revitalised this year after two slow years and added: “Tradesmen are happier, and we are hopeful for the future. We, as tradesmen, are trying to keep up with the increased interest in the most effective way.”
Kusadasi is close to Dilek Peninsula National Park, which is one of the most diverse areas in Turkey. There are also numerous pristine beaches in this famous resort town for holiday makers to enjoy, making Kusadasi a popular spot for tourists as well as those interested in buying property in Kusadasi.
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