Turkey attracted 17.6 million foreign visitors from January to September, up 86% from the same period last year, the country’s Culture and Tourism Ministry said on Thursday.
Despite the significant improvement, the nine-month figure did not overtake the pre-pandemic level of 2019.
The Mediterranean resort city of Antalya was the top draw for foreign visitors with a 39% share, attracting 6.8 million foreigners in January-September.
It was followed by Istanbul, Turkey's largest city by population with 33% share, and Edirne in northwestern Turkey, which borders both Bulgaria and Greece, with a 10% share.
The ministry data showed that the country welcomed 21.5 million visitors, including Turkish citizens living abroad, in the first nine months of this year.
Russians made up 20% or 3.5 million of all visitors, followed by Germans with 13%, Ukrainians with 1.8%, Bulgarians with 5%, and Iranians with 4%.
In September, the country saw 3.5 million foreign arrivals, rising by 60% on an annual basis.