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5 Dec 2016

Over 1,100 tourists visit Grodno Oblast visa-free since 26 October

GRODNO, 5 December (BelTA) – More than 1,100 tourists have visited the Belarusian city of Grodno and its surroundings since 26 October, Tatiana Lidyayeva, deputy head of the sport and tourism department of the Grodno Oblast Executive Committee, told BelTA.

Some 1,100 foreign nationals have used the opportunity of visa-free travel to the tourism and recreation park Augustow Canal over a period of slightly more than a month. Approximately 1,400 people got registered to visit Belarus’ Grodno Oblast.

“Most of the tourists are from our neighboring countries of Lithuania and Poland. Among those who visited the region or got registered to do so, there are also representatives of more exotic countries, for instance, Japan. All in all, we have received applications from citizens of 19 countries, including Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Finland, the United Kingdom and others,” Tatiana Lidyayeva noted. She pointed out that the average length of stay is one or two days.

“Few tourists stay in Grodno Oblast for the maximum allowed period of five days. Now is not the season. By the way, we have already welcomed many representatives of Lithuanian travel agencies that are busy developing routes and visiting our sites, service facilities, cafes and hotels to bring their first tourist groups here in spring,” Tatiana Lidyayeva said. She emphasized that foreign tourists are interested in Grodno, the Augustow Canal, different historical and cultural sites. Dishes of the national cuisine, traditional clothes, customs and crafts draw special attention.

Decree No. 318 of the Belarusian head of state on the introduction of the visa-free travel to the Augustow Canal for foreigners came into force on 26 October. The document permits foreign nationals to stay on the territory of the park and its surroundings for a period of up to five days.

The document will be in force till 31 December 2017. Both independent travelers and group tourists can enter the Augustow Canal without a visa.

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