The messenger logo

Tourism is developing in Georgia

By Messenger Staff
Wednesday, June 16
The Georgian tourist business has started saying that we are at the beginning of the end of the tourism crisis. After the two years of setbacks Georgian tour operators are becoming rather busy again and foreign tourists are again entering the country, although not yet as many as before the August 2008 war.

The Tourism and Resorts Department states that in the first four months of 2010 around half a million tourists entered Georgia, almost 40% more than in the same period last year.

It projects that around 1.7 million tourists will come to Georgia this year. Most of these people will be visiting the Adjara sea resorts in summer, and on the basis of current bookings Azerbaijan will send the most tourists, followed by Turkey and Armenia. Turkish tourists traditionally visit Adjara to gamble.

Internal tourism is also developing. In 2009 more than 21% of Tbilisi residents spent their holidays at the Adjara sea resorts and it is expected that this quantity will increase this year. The tastes of tourists are diversifying. Some time ago holidaymakers went to the seaside resorts in summer and the mountain ski resorts in winter, but today more and more people are attracted by the protected territories of Georgia. Information from the Protected Territories Agency suggests that in 2009 up to 100,000 tourists visited them, 65,000 of these holidaying at the Sataplia protected territory. People also visited Vashlovani, Borjomi-Kharagauli and other national parks.

The state is trying to improve Georgia's infrastructure, building roads and assisting locals and thus encouraging domestic tourism. Interestingly, 90% of the holidaymakers in the protected territories are Georgian citizens.