Number of foreign tourists to the northwestern Iranian province of East Azarbaijan has increased 10 percent year-on-year since March 21, 2018, said the director general of the provincial Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Department on Thursday.
Morteza Abdar added, “According to the latest statistics, the number of foreign tourists who have visited the province since March 21 stands at over 493,000, which shows a significant rise compared to the figure for the same period last year,” IRNA wrote.
He also reported an increase of 22 percent in the number of domestic tourists to East Azarbaijan Province since the beginning of the year to March 2019, putting their number at 4.5 million.
Abdar said designating Tabriz as the ‘Capital of Islamic Tourism’ in 2018 was among the factors contributing to the increase in the number of foreign tourists to the province.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani attended a ceremony on April 25 in Tabriz to celebrate the city’s designation as the ‘Capital of Islamic Tourism’ in 2018 by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
The event marked a turning point in the province’s tourism industry, he said, adding the city’s officials and people have come to a conclusion that economic development is highly dependent on developing the tourism sector.
Turning to recent cultural developments in the province, Abdar said during the last two years, all museums of the province have been organized in terms of their physical properties and software programs.