By Rasana Gasimova
Azerbaijan has won the National Geographic Traveler Awards 2019 in the best excursion destination category during a competition held in Moscow on November 28, the State Tourism agency has reported.
Over 450,000 people participated in the online voting via the nat-geo.ru website. In the category of best excursion destination, Azerbaijan was followed by Italy and the U.K.
This year, the voting was held from June 29 to October 31. It included 24 nominations for the most popular types of tourism and the best tourism destinations.
Tourism products and tourism destinations of more than 50 countries were up for a vote.
Organized by the National Geographic Traveler magazine in Moscow, the 9th annual National Geographic Traveler Awards showcases the best travel destinations and encourages creation of new travel destinations.
The National Geographic Traveler magazine is published by National Geographic Partners in many countries around the world, including Russia.
Being a mesmerizing mix of East and West, Azerbaijan is attractive destination for tourists. The number of foreigners visiting Azerbaijan for tourism has significantly increased.
Tourists are attracted by the quality of the hotel basis, the richness of excursion programs and the development of sanitary and spa complexes.
Azerbaijan is among the developing countries in the field of tourism, occupying the 39th place among 148 countries in terms of global competitiveness in tourism. As many as 2.68 million tourists visited Azerbaijan in January-October 2019.
Simplification of visa regime also plays a major role in the development of tourism in Azerbaijan. Currently, citizens of a number of countries get visas right at the Azerbaijani airports, while other tourists can visit the country by getting online tourist visas.
Apart from excursions and sightseeing, Azerbaijan provides tourists with the opportunities for rural, health, environmental, cultural, social, commercial, sport, and other kinds of tourism.
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