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15 thousand foreign tourists visited Kazakhstan in 6 months

30 september 2011, 12:02
Head of Kazakhstan Touristic Association Rashida Shaikenova. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy
Head of Kazakhstan Touristic Association Rashida Shaikenova. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy
15 thousand foreign tourists visited Kazakhstan in 6 months, Tengrinews.kz reports citing head of Kazakhstan Tourist Association (KTA) Rashida Shaikenova.

"217 thousand people received services in tourist companies as of July 2011, 15 thousand of them are non-residents,” KTA states. 12 thousand of them are from far abroad and others are from CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries. A majority of tourists come to Kazakhstan from Germany, China, USA and France.

Egypt, until recently popular among Kazakhstan residents, is currently losing points. Tough political situation in the region has become one of the main factors for slowdown of demand. “I cannot say there is an increase right now. Egypt is the direction that is normally promoted close to the New Year: January, February, March. It is hard to say now, whether this direction will be popular or it will stay at the level of the previous years,” Shaikenova said.

Besides, according to statistics as of June 2011, over 250 thousand Kazakhstan residents went abroad on vacation. As per Rashida Shaikenova, Kazakhstan residents prefer to visit Turkey, Bulgaria, Croatia, Montenegro and Crete. Some Kazakhstan residents with higher income like to spend their vacation in Spain, Italy and France. “The country becomes popular if it offers simple entrance conditions. These are visas, chartered flights, the travelling expenses in general,” she said. As for Issyk-Kul, this direction re-gained its popularity this year. For trips in autumn Kazkahstan residents chose Thailand, Malaysia, Finland and UAE.

Trips to Saudi Arabia form up a separate line in the rating of countries. Kazakhstan residents go there for Hajj. “This is an exotic type of tourism, so-called pilgrimage, that doubles every year,” Rashida Shaikenova said.

She noted an increase in Kazakhstan's demand for so-called weekend tours, when people leave their cities to have rest for a few days. Weekend tours in Almaty oblast are Kapshagai, natural resourts, Aksai gorge, Big Almaty Lake. Astana residents frequently go to Borovoye. Two-day trips are normally popular in spring and summer. Mountains are the most popular destination in winter.

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