Greece, one of the world’s leading destinations, maintained its strong momentum in 2016 and continued its course to growth. International arrivals are expected to exceed the record-breaking number of 26 million that had been achieved in 2015 and these positive results are due to our new national tourism policy that we designed and implemented with a concrete plan to further empower and promote Greece’s tourism.
Through our new policy, we extended our season for the first time as early as the beginning of April and until November, enhanced our presence in our traditional markets but also accessed new dynamic source-markets abroad, pursued strategic cooperation to increase tourism packages and established new direct flights to popular but also new Greek destinations. As we develop new thematic tourist products based on our country’s unique competitive advantages, we are more ready than ever to attract tourism 365 days a year.
Our thirteen remarkably diverse regions, each with its own distinct identity offer highly personalized travel experiences in their varied landscape ranging from white sandy beaches to breathtaking mountain vistas, and from serene island villages to luxurious Mediterranean resorts. Our vibrant cities attract an increasing number of visitors that indulge in our history and culture and enjoy great entertainment, shopping, the famous Greek gastronomy and nightlife.
Our archaeological sites of world heritage and museums, art galleries and major cultural events, are a vivid representation of our unique culture. Festivals, local festivities, fairs and village feasts take place daily across Greece, in open-air theaters, castles and squares. Sports and recreation, spas and wellness, cultural and spiritual routes and culinary tours take place all year round.
Being the most diverse complex of islands in the Mediterranean, with one of the longest coastlines and with safe crystal-blue waters we have already a significant increase of cruises to Greek destinations, and we now develop our new strategy to become a major hub for cruises in Europe. Our islands’ proximity and frequent interconnection with the mainland allows our visitors to explore more than one destination in one trip.
There are few places in the world where you have the chance to ski on the mountain and within 20 minutes be able to swim at a breathtaking beach.
No other destination can spoil you with so many choices and can offer such wide-ranging and authentic travel experiences all year through.
In terms of infrastructure, new luxury hotels and resorts have emerged and major projects are underway for the renovation and upgrade of existing hotel units that offer diverse and high quality service along with the very warm Greek hospitality that our visitors experience throughout their trip.
On the occasion of the World Travel Market, where the heart of the global travel industry meets every year, I would like to extend a personal invitation to you to visit Greece and let yourself be carried away by the charm and magic this country will offer to you generously.