Time to Travel Tibet

Tourists are heading back into Tibet this year. The number of tourist arrivals in the first half of 2009 has reached a record high.

Badly affected by the March 14 riot in 2008, merely 342,000 tourists traveled into Tibet in the first half of 2008, slumped by nearly 70 percent compared to the same period of 2007. Discounts and campaigns to woo tourists have finally seen results since early this year. Reportedly 1.49 million domestic and international tourists have traveled into Tibet between January and July, a 35.8% growth over the previous record of 1.1 million visitors in the first half of 2007 for the region. The revenue has grown up 14.1% compared to the same period in 2007, said Wang Songping, deputy director of the Tibet Tourism Bureau. He indicated that Tibet's tourism has entered a period of rapid development. Industrial insiders are also expecting a surge in tourism in the third quarter.

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