Tourism in Iran is booming with a 12% growth in foreign tourist arrivals for the month of June 2016. Right after a historic deal, between six world Iran tourism expecting a big jump in the tourism industry.

According to the news the number of foreign tourists who visited Iran was doubled after the nuclear agreement in January 2016. The Most of the tourists who apply for getting visa to visit Iran are from Germany, Italy and France, the head of Iranian Tour Operators Association, Ebrahim Pourfaraj, told IRNA on Thursday.

“Not taking religious tourists [visiting holy shrines] into account, Europeans rank first among tourists who visit the country,” he said.

Iran Tourism: A long way to go

Iran certainly has a long way to go 20 million tourists is what Iran should handle based on Iran Mater Plan.

Earlier this month, Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicraft Organization Director Masoud Soltanifar announced that Iran has increased its visa on arrival extension from 1 month to 3 months.

Iran Visa on Arrival

For the time being, citizens of 190 countries can obtain visa on arrival at the country’s airports with one-month validation, he added.

In October 2015, Soltanifar said the easing of visa rules was opening the door for the return of foreign tourists to Iran.

The number of foreigners visiting Iran has grown 12 percent in each of the past two years.

In 2014, Iran hosted over five million tourists (Including religious tourists), bringing in some $7.5 billion in revenue.

Tourism in Iran is booming after the nuclear conflict. Right after a historic deal, between between six world Iran tourism expecting a big jump in the tourism industry.

Although many sanctions have already been lifted by the European Union and some European companies have a head start in developing more robust Iran vacations but it seems reduce the gap between the number of Iran’s tourist attractions and the number of tourists entering in Iran is not easy as restoring Iran’s image will take a long time.

Rich Iranian cultural heritage

Iran Tourism Need to Rebuild its Image After the Nuclear Deal

Azadi Tower, Tehran, Iran

Iran has one of the largest resource bases for cultural, natural and historical sites of any country in the world. 

Iranian plateau is replete with cultural heritage and historical monuments. These architectural remnants date back somewhere between an average 2000 years. 

From the “Jiroft civilization” south of Iran, to the “Shahr-e Sukhteh” or the “Burnt City”, in the south east of the country,; to the “ChoghazanbilZigurat, one of the rare few ziggurats or Step Pyramids, outside of Mesopotamian heartlands, all the way down to the magnificent Achaemenid palaces of Persepolis and regal tombs in Pasargadae, near Shiraz, are all but a few examples of what the land of Persia has to offer, when it comes to ancient history.

Overall some 19 major archaeological sites in Iran have been globally registered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as World Heritage sites. At the moment, Iran stands 11th in the number of registered world heritage sites.

Archaeologists estimate that modern Iran is home to over a million historical sites, places and zones. During the past centuries, over 150,000 of such sites have been located in different parts of the country.

French tourists In Iran - SURFIRAN

French tourists In Iran – SURFIRAN

Discoveries are under way for finding the rest of the historical sites and relics across the country.

Since 1930, the year the first Ancient Monuments Protection Act was ratified in Iran, we have managed to register 32,000 historical sites in the country.

Tourism infrastructure in Iran

At the moment, Iran generates nearly USD 8 billion from tourism or its related sectors, which comparatively viewed, puts it at the 36th position worldwide.

Of course, there are several reasons to this shortcoming: From the negativity of anti-Iran propaganda churned out by mainstream Western media on a daily basis to the under-development of Iran’s inland transportation system and hospitality industry, for which a decade of tough nuclear sanctions plus many more years of a general blockade can be partly blamed.

The size of Iran tourism industry

The size of Iran tourism industry – including cultural and ecotourism as major components of it – is estimated as having the potential to create jobs for 1,285,500 and rise by 4.1% pa to 1,913,000 jobs in 2025.

Based on the report by World Travel and Tourism Council in 2015 in the year of 2014 Travel & Tourism directly supported 413,000 jobs (1.8% of total employment).

This is expected to rise by 4.4% in 2015 and rise by 4.3% pa to 656,000 jobs (2.2% of total employment). in 2025.

The document also reported that money spent by foreign visitors to a country (or visitor exports) is a key component of the direct contribution of Travel & Tourism. In 2014, Iran Tourism generated IRR24,903.4bn in visitor exports. In 2015, this is expected to grow by 3.2%, and the country is expected to attract 3,167,000 international tourist arrivals.

Isfahan, Iran - An Iranian trader sleeps as he sit at his cloth shop in Isfahan Traditional Grand Bazaar, 450 km (281 miles) south of Tehran. Traditional Grand Bazaar is a historical market in the city of Isfahan also is one of the oldest and largest bazaars in the Middle East which is dating back to the 17th century. The bazaar with 2 Km length is the main connection between the old city with the new. Morteza Nikoubazl/ZUMAPRESS

Isfahan, Iran – An Iranian trader sleeps as he sit at his cloth shop in Isfahan Traditional Grand Bazaar. Morteza Nikoubazl/ZUMAPRESS

By 2025, international tourist arrivals are forecast to total 4,740,000, generating expenditure of IRR 34,604.1bn, an increase of 3.0% pa which can cause great economic leap in Iran  But in this way, Iran will face challenges that it’s not too easy to control.

Infact over the last two decades, Iran Tourism has been presented by the global media to the world as a strict and religious country.

This, of course, makes it improbable that recreational tourists will choose this country as a destination, rather than travelling to other places that are apparently much less ‘difficult’.

Good intercultural communication, a clear understanding of tourists’ needs and modifying Iran own attitudes towards tourists and tourism must necessarily be considered as vital elements for paving the way to providing them with sense of ease.

At the same time, Iran should concentrate its efforts on attracting foreign tourists who value the cultural and natural advantages specific to Iran.

Such tourists are much less likely to be deterred by the negative propaganda against the country.

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