By Nigar Orujova
Baku is among top five cities, which Russian tourists want to visit in 2016.
Azerbaijan attracts Russian tourists with possibility to rest on the Caspian Sea shore, discover the mesmerizing mix of East and West in Baku, and enjoy fresh air and delicious meals in the regions of the country.
Travel.ru website identified the most popular tourist destinations in the CIS countries among Russian tourists in 2016, using the hotel reservations by Russians from February 1 to December 31, 2016.
The data revealed that over the past year, the number of trips to the CIS countries made by tourists travelling independently has increased by 20 percent.
The Azerbaijani capital is in the top five most popular cities in the CIS for Russian tourists. This year Russians have booked trips to Baku for an average of four days and paid over 3,000 rubles a day for accommodation.
The top five also includes Minsk, Tbilisi, Yerevan, and Kiev, according to Travel.ru.
Russian tourists do not need visa to travel to Azerbaijan, which make the country more attractive. Tourists from neighboring Russia were always frequent guests in Azerbaijan and the recent developments made more Russians to think about Baku when planning their vacations.
The frosty relations between Russia and Europe have directed the tourism market of the country to the new way. Turkey has become more attractive for Russian tourists after Moscow suspended flights to Egypt. Following the downing of the Russian jet, Russian travel agencies suspended sales of tour packages to Turkey.
Moreover, unstable economic situation in Russia made the tourists to look for cheap destinations for vacation.
Azerbaijan cannot be named the cheapest destination in the region, but the country is now targeted to create more budget hotels around the country.
Today, there are luxury 5 star hotels of the world famous brands, a number of budget hotels and hostels in Azerbaijan.
The prices in the tourism facilities of the country have not risen recently and after the double devaluation of the national currency, the prices are more affordable.
Discussing this news in the social media, many Russian citizens name Azerbaijan as their potential destination for this summer.
One of the main advantages of Azerbaijan, besides the captivating beauty of the country and hospitable population, is the fact that many people here know Russian and English.
Today, when the country has winter tourism complexes as well, Russian tourists could start discover Azerbaijan right now, and sure enough, they will not be disappointed.
Nigar Orujova is AzerNews’s staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @o_nigar
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