Cyprus represents one of the most beautiful countries in the world. This island nation of Europe is in close proximity to Asia and Africa, making it one of the most sought after tourist destinations among all the European countries. Due to its strategic location, Cyprus is often referred to as the stepping-stone to the three continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa.
Tourism constitutes one of the prime movers of Cypriot economy. It constituted about 10% to the country’s GDP in 2006 and this percentage is still on the rise, with Brits topping the list of maximum number of tourists visiting Cyprus in 2006. The earnings during that period from tourism alone were to the tune of £25K million. In terms of employment, tourism generated 30% of the jobs in Cyprus during 2006. These figures clearly underline the fact that tourism is the linchpin of Cypriot economy.
Figures suggest that during the period 1997 to 2001, the tourist arrivals in Cyprus increased at an average annual rate of 6.7%. However, this growth saw a dip in 2001, which continued till mid-June 2002. This figure is expected to grow at an annual rate of 6% between 2002 and 2012.
Reasons for Growth in tourism in Cyprus What to do at sentosa singapore
The tourist figures in recent times and the projections all combine to indicate a robust growth in the Cypriot tourism economy. And the reasons are not too far to seek.
One positive development clearly emerging out in the recent years is Cyprus joining EU. The European Union membership has brought out the best in the member countries. And Cyprus is no exception. Before joining the EU, the country was struggling for its distinct identity as tourist hotbed, but with EU policies in place, the number of visitors from the member counties has seen a quantum jump in the recent years.
EU membership mandates the adoption of liberal policies in terms of trade, tourism and travel. And this has awakened Cyprus from its deep slumber. The under-exploited tourism potential came to the fore after EU membership with cheap air travel, better connectivity with neighbouring countries, and resultantly, improved economy.
The history of the country has a major role to play in boosting its tourism potential. Cyprus is the birthplace of legendary Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite. Cyprus also saw invasions from countries, like Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Persia, Britain etc., which has left the country rich in diverse cultural treasures, like Crusader Castles and the Tomb of Mohammad’s Aunt. The country’s roots are traced to Neolithic period and the subsequent invasions by different countries at different points in history can be attributed to the location of Cyprus, which gave close proximity to African, Asian, and European countries to establish their rule in this beautiful island nation. A long-standing dispute regarding Northern Cyprus with Turkey notwithstanding, the country is largely peaceful.