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26 Jul 2018

Tourist arrivals in Grodno Oblast up by 20% in January-June

GRODNO, 26 July (BelTA) – The number of tourists visiting Grodno Oblast increased by 20% in January-June, BelTA learned from the sport and tourism department of the Grodno Oblast Executive Committee.

In H1 2018, the region welcomed over 132,000 tourists, including more than 45,000 foreign nationals.

“The export of tourism services over the five months of 2018 was estimated at about $4.5 million, up by 12.2% over the same period a year earlier,” the sport and tourist department informed.

The increase in tourist arrivals is partly attributed to the ten-day visa waiver in the territory of Grodno District. The visa waiver applies regardless of the mode of transport. Thus, tourists can enter the visa-free area by car, by bus, by rail or by air. Those who want to cross the border by foot, by bicycle or on a small boat, can do it through the Lesnaya Rudavka checkpoint located on the Belarus-Poland border on the Augustow Canal.

The increase in tourist numbers spurs the development of tourist infrastructure. “New hotels and public catering facilities are opened. Since the start of the year, the number of homesteads for eco-tourists has risen from 327 to 345. By the way, most of them opened in the territory of the so-called visa-free area. Since the beginning of the year, over 40,000 tourists from more than 50 countries took advantage of the visa waiver program to visit Grodno and the district. For comparison: in the entire year of 2017 the number of such tourists was about 50,000,” the sport and tourism department noted.

The region keeps working to improve its hospitality sector. It considers developing a tourist card that will offer its holder bonuses and discounts for accommodation, cafes and restaurants, museums and other landmarks.

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