MUGLA, Turkey

Turkey’s Aegean province of Mugla has become a top destination for British tourists on holiday amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Turkey’s Safe Tourism Certification Program, covering a broad range of safety measures in transport, accommodation and health conditions for tourists and hospitality employees alike, ensure that hotels and blue-flag beaches observe social distance rules in the sea and pool, as well as in sunbathing areas.

Among those vacationers who chose to visit the city, the British have again taken first place.

According to data from the local tourism authority, over 250,000 of the nearly 545,000 tourists who came to Mugla between Jan. 1 and Sept. 22 were from the UK.

The Aegean province has hosted over 1 million guests in 2018 and last year.

Mugla: Prime real estate

Zekeriya Bingol, the head of Mugla’s Culture and Tourism Directorate, told Anadolu Agency that British holiday goers preferred the province amid the virus pandemic, benefiting the local tourism industry.

“Many British guests decide to settle here in later years because they admire the city they came for vacation,” explained Bingol.

Yucel Okutur, president of the hoteliers association in the Dalaman, Ortaca, Koycegiz districts, said Mugla was among the top places in Turkey where the British nationals bought real estate.

The British are eager to come to Mugla, Okutur said, adding that currently, Turkey has been among the most successful countries in Europe in dealing with the coronavirus.

Praising the country’s health institutions, he said: “This is a great opportunity for tourism. Tourists in our country have had no problems with the epidemic.”

“Our friends in Europe will come to Turkey in the coming season and make us the number-one tourist destination in the country,” he added.

“Both with its natural beauty and tourist facilities, Turkey will take its place as number one next year.”

Okutur underlined that they expected flights from the UK to continue to the region over the coming months. the continuation of flights from England to the region in the coming months.

Copyright 2020 Anadolu Agency. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.