Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 16
By Seba Aghayeva – Trend:
Azerbaijan has succeeded in the European tourism market by simplifying the visa regime for foreign citizens, Hungarian ambassador to Azerbaijan Imre Laslotski said in an interview with Trend.
"Simplification of the visa regime for foreign citizens was a very correct and positive step to attract tourists to Azerbaijan,” Laslotski said. “As a result of this step, more and more foreign tourists are able to get acquainted with cultural, historical and natural values of Azerbaijan."
Foreign citizens have been able to obtain visas to visit Azerbaijan within three days, that is, e-visa, since January 10, 2017 following the visa regime simplification.
Laslotski added that the flow of tourists from the Arab countries increased as a result of the simplification of the visa regime.
"Azerbaijan is always in the spotlight due to important international sports events and forums," the ambassador said.
The first European Games were held in Baku in 2015, while the 2017 Formula 1 Grand Prix of Europe will be held in June 2017.
Moreover, the fourth Islamic Solidarity Games will be held in Baku May 12-22, 2017. Up to 3,500 athletes from the member-states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation are expected to participate in the games.
"I think that Azerbaijan’s geographical location, climatic conditions are unique,” Laslotski said.
He said that Azerbaijan has well-equipped beaches, modern wellness-centers, mountain resorts, adding that it is possible to enjoy nature in summer and winter, walking and skiing.
"There are a lot of hotels in Baku and its surroundings,” Laslotski said. “Baku has a number of sights, included in the list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, namely, Gobustan, Ateshgah, Mardakan, mud volcanoes. The tourist infrastructure is well-developed in such Azerbaijani cities as Sheki, Gabala and Guba.”
The diplomat added that Wizz Air Hungary Ltd makes regular Baku-Budapest flights.
“The planes are full of passengers, mainly, Azerbaijani citizens, but a flow of Hungarian tourists visiting Azerbaijan is also growing,” he said.
"There is a common feature between Hungarians and Azerbaijanis, both like to eat,” Laslotski said. “I visited many Azerbaijani restaurants and tried all the national dishes. I often invite my Hungarian guests to the national restaurants. All of them like the variety of salads, fresh vegetables, lamb and fish dishes, dairy products, cheeses, bread, baked in a wood fire oven called tendir, and spices."