The first group of Chinese tourists will travel to Crimea without visas on July 20 under the Sino-Russian agreement on visa-free travel for tourist groups, the press service of the World without Frontiers tourism association, which had organized the trip, said on Friday.
“Holidays in Crimea have become available to Chinese tourists, which have been the most numerous guests to Russia over the past few years. The first group will travel to Crimea via Moscow. The peninsula attracts the Chinese with unique nature as well as historical and cultural sites. Besides, Crimea offers excellent opportunities for beach rest; educational and even ecological tourism,” the association’s press service said.
Sergei Kozyrenko, the supervisor for a project for developing visa-free group tourism of the World without Frontiers Company, said that Crimea was a promising direction for China’s foreign tourism.
According to him, Crimea has many places, which are familiar to everybody. They include, first and foremost, the resort city of Yalta; the federal city of Sevastopol and the Khersones Tavrichesky historical and archaeological reserve included in the list of UNESCO’s 100 most outstanding world cultural landmarks. The centuries-old history is not the peninsula’s only attraction.
“Crimea is famous for its unique natural landscape, health resorts and opportunities for treatment,” the press service quoted Kozyrenko as saying.
Under the Russia-China agreement on visa-free group tours, Chinese tourists can stay in Russia without visas for 14 days.
More than 372,000 Chinese tourists entered Russia last year. More than 249,000 of them or 65% travelled without visas as part of tourist groups, the Russian State Committee for Tourism says.
Out of 343,000 Chinese tourists who visited Russia in 2012, almost 185,000 travelled without visas as members of tourist groups. That puts the number of Chinese tourists entering Russia on visa-free lists at 35%.
The World without Frontiers is an authorized organization, which has the right to implement the Sino-Russian agreement.