Similarity between Turkish and Arab cuisine is one of the most significant factors for Arab tourists choosing Turkey as their holiday destination, according to officials from Arab tourism agencies, who visited Kastamonu and Sinop
Officials from tourism agencies from Arab countries, have spoken about why their citizens chose to come to Turkey for holidays. Among the most important factors they detailed were the food, the shared history, the natural beauty, and religious similarities between Turkey and their home countries.
The officials from Oman, Kuwait, Qatar Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Abu Dhabi visited touristic and historical places in the Black Sea provinces of Sinop and Kastamonu over the weekend. The Western Black Sea Promotional Tour was organized with the cooperation of Turkish Airlines (THY), the Kastamonu Confederation (Kas-Kon), and the Turkish-Middle East Tourism Council Agencies.
Nasim Syed from Kuwait said his citizens chose to come to Turkey with their family since it was a Muslim country like Kuwait and so also used halal food. “Turkey is a Muslim country. At the same time, it attracts our citizens because the roots of the Ottoman Empire are on this land, and the Ottoman Empire protected and governed Arab countries in the past. Halal food and tasty dishes are other reasons for them to come to Turkey. Its weather is nice, too.”
Oman’s Samiri al-Ajmi said that there were very beautiful places in Kastamonu. “The city has a natural beauty.” He said the first thing that came to his mind about Turkey was that it was a good country for tourism, adding, “It has been said that the green areas in Turkey do not exist in any other place. I saw it when I came here. The fact that it is between the East and the West, Asia and Europe is very important in terms of tourism.”
Interest increasing every year
Sree Kumar, a travel agency official from Abu Dhabi, said his agency organized tours to Turkey two or three times a year, and that they had been working with Turkey for 15 years. “People’s interest in Turkey is increasing every year.”
Kumar said there were many people in Abu Dhabi who wished to visit Turkey. “Tours are organized particularly to Istanbul, Yalova and Bursa. Trips on the Bosphorus, historical areas and touristic venues draw the attention of our people. Its history is also particularly attractive.” He added that the opening of a new airport would encourage further tourism in Kastamonu.
Saudi Arabian Muhammet Nas?r said Turkey’s natural beauty had also drawn the attention of Arab tourists. “Turkey is a beautiful country, and it does not require a visa. This is what first attracts us. We also have the same religion, and this is why our citizens want to come to Turkey so much,” Nas?r said.
Bhauna Singh from Dubai said the reason why Dubai’s people came to Turkey was the hospitality of Turkish people and their smiling faces. He added that Dubai’s tourists generally liked to visit multi-cultural places, and so Turkey fits the bill.
KASTAMONU – Anatolia News Agency