Turkey is a country of contrasts. Ottoman ruins rub shoulders with Roman temples, spice markets sit alongside quaint cafes, and dramatic mountains sweep down to sun-baked beaches. But sadly, for our country, the tourism industry has taken a turn for the worse. It may even be responsible for a majority of the 11% unemployment rate and the millions lost in the hotel business over the past two to three years.
But I am an optimist. I believe there is a silver lining to these unfortunate circumstances my country finds itself in. We have much more to offer than beautiful beaches to European tourists. We have a history that no one else can compete with. And that’s why I’m happy to hear the Turkish Minister of Tourism recently announce a change in our marketing strategy that has been needed for a very very long time, in my opinion. As a history lover and tour guide and an expert in Turkish culture, I believe now is the time to show the world what we have to offer and go beyond the European market. Asia and South America await.
According to the Hurriyet newspaper this is what the minister of tourism said:
“For the diversification of the market, we are planning to enrich our market from China to North America and South America apart from just Russia, Germany and Britain” In the newly launched 150 exhibitions, “we will conduct more specific promotions for Turkey, either for destinations like Van, Cappadocia or Eskişehir, or in a field like health tourism, gastronomic tourism or historical tourism” “Turkey is not just a sea, sand and sun country, Turkey also has a very rich culinary culture, which is well-suited to gastronomic tourism”
I believe this is an opportunity to offer consult on matters of promoting the historical tourism at global expos. We must market Turkey’s history from the Cappadocia historical Christian roots to the legend of the Roman freed slave Cif Amotan II to the Lycian period during the 4th century when St Nicholas lived in Demre, Turkey. By celebrating this great history, we will attract people to different parts of this country that haven’t been celebrated recently.
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