The streets and squares of Istanbul in Turkey are witnessing a great deal of tourists with the advent of the beautiful spring weather and in conjunction with the approach of Eid al-Fitr, and the accompanying lifting of measures to combat the Corona pandemic.
Last Tuesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced the cessation of wearing masks in all public places and limiting them to public transportation, hospitals and medical centers, provided that they will be removed later from these places as well, with a decrease in cases.
This measure encouraged tourists and local visitors to visit Istanbul to spend the Eid holiday, especially after two years, the repercussions of Corona and its strict precautionary measures dominated their holidays.
Istanbul Airport has become the second airport in the world in terms of passenger traffic, with 26.5 million people, according to what the Airports Council International said in a report this April.
Turkish Treasury and Finance Minister Noureddine Vegai announced last Thursday that Turkey expects 45 million foreign tourists to visit its lands this year, bringing the country’s income close to 35 billion dollars.
The Turkish minister added, in press statements, that “Turkey provides different methods of payment for Russian tourists and tourists will not suffer from the issue of payment, and there are means that can be resorted to.”
He revealed that “the occupancy rate of hotels this April amounted to 68 percent in Istanbul only, and next May the hotel occupancy rate in the city will reach 92 percent, which means that it is difficult to find empty hotels in Istanbul.”
He stressed that “these numbers will increase with the advent of Arab and Saudi tourism in the coming period, which means exceeding the goals set by the government, and there are hotels booked for 2-3 months.”
In light of the spring atmosphere, the tourist areas in Istanbul are becoming more beautiful, as the rich nature of the seas and the greenery of the trees and forests surrounding the city blend with the historical and cultural places in it to increase the demand for tourists to the ancient city.
The gardens that spread throughout Istanbul witness the atmosphere of spring, especially those in which tulips bloom at this time of the year, a problem of mixing distinct colors.
The Bosphorus and the neighboring areas of Besiktas, Bebek and Nisantasi, adjacent to the Taksim area, in addition to the Sultanahmet area, are among the most important central tourist destinations preferred by visitors from inside and outside Turkey.
A heavy movement of tourists was observed in the “Taksim” area, especially in the areas surrounding hotels, markets and historical sites, where they smiled under the new conditions that allowed for a better tourist atmosphere.
Visitors also arrive daily at Taksim Square and Istiklal Street, which are dotted with shops, lively centers, restaurants, markets and libraries, as well as a number of diplomatic representations and historical and archaeological areas.
Taksim is one of the centers that expresses the coexistence of religions and beliefs. It has a mosque bearing the name of the region and the Church of Aya Triada, and the Ataturk Cultural Center, which includes an opera house, was recently opened.
With the diversity of visitors from different countries around the world from the Middle East, Europe, the Asian and African continent, this year’s tourist season heralds a return to life before the Corona pandemic.