35 percent increase in tourism in Kurdistan Region     

More than two million and 450,000 tourists visited Sulaimani province last year, an increase of over a million compared to the previous year.
author_image Kurdistan 24
A man is seen picking up litter at Fellaw Pond in the Kurdistan Region's Erbil province. (Photo: Handout /Ministry of Tourism and Municipality)
A man is seen picking up litter at Fellaw Pond in the Kurdistan Region's Erbil province. (Photo: Handout /Ministry of Tourism and Municipality)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The tourism sector in Iraq’s Kurdish region has seen a 35 percent growth in 2022, according to official figures released by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).

The three main provinces in the Kurdistan Region equally hosted more than two million tourists last year, stated Sirwan Tofiq, the head of the marketing section of the KRG Board of Tourism.

In 2021, Duhok province had over 613,000 tourists. One year later, it rose to 2.3 million tourists according to the KRG official. The capital of Erbil witnessed an increase of nearly 300,000 tourists in 2022.

More than two million and 450,000 tourists visited Sulaimani province last year, an increase of over a million compared to the previous year.

The tourism authority recently announced that more than six million tourists in total visited the Kurdistan Region in 2022.

In addition to the holiday season, thousands of domestic tourists from across Iraq visit the northern Kurdish region, known for its mountain resorts and relatively cool temperatures, to escape the scorching summer heat weather in southern Iraq.   

“Improving and developing the tourism sector is one of the main goals of the KRG’s ninth cabinet,” the official said.

The KRG has proposed plans to further boost the tourism sector, as an alternative to diversify its reliance on hydrocarbon revenues. The plan includes an eight-year-long strategy to attract 20 million tourists annually.