Salalah visitors up by 28pc

Muscat: The number of visitors to Salalah during the tourist season 2018, which was between June 21 and September 21, reached 826,376, recording a rise of 28.1% over the number of visitors of the season in 2017, when it was 644,931, according to statistics released by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI). About 94.4% tourists visited Salalah for recreational and entertainment purposes, with their number reaching 779,703, which is an increase compared to 604,774 in 2017.

As many as 12,966 tourists visited their relatives, families and friends; 23,281 were on business trip and 10,426 visited for other purposes. According to NCSI statistics, based on the results of the survey on the number visitors of the Salalah tourist season 2018, the percentage of GCC visitors, including Omanis, reached 90.6%, with their total number at 748,515. It is a 29.9% increase over the number in 2017, when it was 576,006. They were followed by 48,907 Asian tourists, a significant increase compared to 44,801 in 2017 season.

The number of tourists from other Arab countries was 22,306, while those from the European countries reached 4,293. The number of tourists from other countries was 2,355. As per the NCSI data, 77.1% of visitors were residents of the Sultanate, reaching 637,320. This is a significant increase over 500,112 in 2017. The number of non-residents visiting Salalah tourism season 2018 reached 189,056, which is an increase compared to 1,819 visitors in 2017.

The number of tourists who reached Salalah by land was 656,853, which is an increase of 37.2% against 478,872 visitors in 2017. According to the data, 169,523 tourists travelled to the Governorate of Dhofar by air during the season, which is a rise of 2.1% compared to 2017, when it was 166,059. About 122,194 visitors reached Salalah traveled by domestic flights and 47,329 through international flights. The largest number of visitors to the Salalah tourist season came during the period from July 1 to July 31, 2018, reaching 239,156. It was followed by the period between August 1 and August 31, with the total number reaching 372,998.

The number during the period from June 21 June to June 30 was 36,456 and between September 1 and September 21 was 23,766. –ONA