By Muhammed Ali Gurtas
ANKARA (AA) – Some 30.7 million people visited museums and ruins across Turkey in 2017, a 21.3-percent rise from the previous year, said the country's statistical authority on Wednesday.
The number of museums in Turkey also increased by 21 to reach 438 in 2017, up 5 percent from the previous year,
"Out of these, 199 museums were affiliated to the Culture and Tourism Ministry, while 239 of them fall in the private museum category," TurkStat said.
Istanbul, one of the most popular touristic destinations in Turkey, leads with 75 museums — 56 of them were private — followed by the capital Ankara and the Aegean province of Izmir with 46 and 27 museums, respectively.
"The number of nature parks increased by 6.7 percent and the total area of the nature parks increased by 3 percent in 2017 compared to 2016,
"The number of nature parks reached to 223 and total area of them increased to 102,409 hectares in 2017," the institute added.