Turkey, which leads the way in Europe and ranks seventh in the world in terms of thermal sites, could easily reach $15 billion in revenue from the sector thanks to “thermal cities,” the secretary-general of Spa Thalasso and Health Resorts Association (TÜRKAP), Ilgaz Nacakoğlu, said Friday.
Nazcakoğlu told which has close to 1,100 thermal sources, 264 licensed spa facilities and around 500 thermal water facilities, is an ambitious country in terms of thermal riches in the world.
In order to benefit from the rapidly spreading spa tourism trend in the world, a greater number of facilities should be opened in Turkey in line with EU standards, Nacakoğlu said.
He also said that the facilities established in İzmir’s Balçova district, Denizli’s Karahayıt district, Kuşadası’s Davutlar region, Yalova, Kütahya’s Yoncalı district, Afyonkarahisar and Bolu welcome tourists from many countries looking for healing, adding that due to the decline in the European market, the facilities achieved success in the Russian, Middle Eastern and Indian markets.
Hotels with thermal sites have recently collaborated with hospitals and medical centers hosting patients from different countries for different treatments and begun adding spa facilities into treatment packages, Nacakoğlu said.
Suggesting that a tourist coming for eye surgery, for example, could spend the recovery period at a thermal hotel after examinations or surgery, Nacakoğlu said increasing the number of these agreements can enable Turkey to use its power in health tourism more effectively.