Visits to Jordan soar
Wednesday 10 November 2010
Tourism in the Middle Eastern state of Jordan has soared this year, figures released this week have shown.
Tourism authorities in the country, which borders Israel, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Syria, said November 8 that the number of overnight tourists between January and September reached a total of 3.56 million people, a 23.4 percent increase on last year.
The numbers have set a new tourism record for the country, far outperforming 2008, the best tourism year ever in Jordan.
Statistics showed that rise was most pronounced among Asian visitors, although visitor numbers from France, Spain, Italy, Germany and Britain also soared, along with those from Canada.
Tourism Jordan said that the ancient city of Petra, a UNESCO World Heritage site and Jordan's most popular tourist attraction, welcomed 30 percent more visitors, while 23 percent more people visited the remains of Jerash, Jordan's second-most popular destination.
Queen Rania Al Abdullah, arguably Jordan's best-known ambassador, has been active in the promotion of her country, recently hosting a "Twisit Jordan" competition using her influential Twitter feed (@QueenRania) in association with Visit Jordan.
The contest generated thousands of views, with the winner of the international and Jordanian categories given a chance to swap countries for a week.
On her website, the Queen urges visitors to "come, see my Jordan, I know you'll enjoy making it your own."
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