Iran's historical cities suffer from lack of foreign tourists, thanks to COVID-19
TEHRAN, Iran, June 6
The interest to visit tourist destinations in Iran's Isfahan, Shiraz and Yazd has reduced, said the Director General of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization branch in Yazd Province Mostafa Fatemi, Trend reports citing ILNA.
"During spring, only 20 foreigners and 300 local tourists visited the city of Yazd and currently the number of foreign tourists in this city is zero," said Fatemi.
"A total of 2.3 million local and 460,000 foreign tourists have visited Yazd in spring of 2018, while the number has dropped due to COVID-19, to 300 domestic and 20 foreign tourists during spring of the current Iranian year (began March 20,2020)," he added.
"Despite that hotels have resumed working, only 10 percent of their establishments are taken. For example, a 100-room hotel only has 5 rooms taken, so they're suffering losses," said the official.
He went on to add that around 400 houses and accommodation centers were identified as 'illegal' during the coronavirus spread, due to ignoring health protocols.
"Some 200 of them were closed, and there were concerns over tours without permits," said Fatemi.
He added that economy of Yazd, Isfahan and Shiraz depends on foreign tourists.
"The guild of gold and jewelry producers was another sector that was damaged in Yazd, due to drop of tourism," he added.
"Many handicrafts production units in Yazd have suffered too," he said.