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Thessaloniki Sets Goal for Year-round Tourism

Photo source: Municipality of Thessaloniki

Photo source: Municipality of Thessaloniki

Establishing the northern port city of Thessaloniki into a year-round destination is a top priority for its mayor, Konstantinos Zervas, who said this week that the average length of stay of visitors had increased from 1.2 days to 2.7.

“Thessaloniki in finally a global destination… We’ve begun to reap the rewards… We now want 12-month tourism,” said Zervas during a city council meeting on Monday.

Besides longer stays in the city, Zervas said tourists were also spending more with average expenditure up by 25 percent compared to previous years and that at least 600 new beds had been added to Thessaloniki’s carrying capacity.

The mayor went on to add that new hotel openings were in the pipeline to meet the growing demand which was reflected in higher airport, port and hotel activity.

Thessaloniki Mayor Konstantinos Zervas.

Upgraded infrastructure, the Thessaloniki metro and redeveloped public space are all expected to enhance the tourist experience, said Zervas.

A major breakthrough, he said, has been the arrival of over 60 cruises ships in 2022 up from 16 last year and 20 in pre-pandemic 2019.

Zervas attributes the dynamic comeback to ongoing promotional and marketing efforts as well as other actions including promoting Thessaloniki as a leading filming location.

“The Thessaloniki municipality has issued 40 permits for the use of public space in 2022 as film and commercial locations,” he said.

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