Turkey is hoping to attract a wider range of British tourists to the country by highlighting its more diverse attractions.

Turkey culture and tourism minister Ertugrul Gunay said the country is best known by the British market for its coastal holiday resorts including Marmaris and Bodrum.

However, with Istanbul set to become the European city of culture in 2010, it is hoped the destination will be able to highlight other more cultural destinations such as Corum in the ancient Hittite Emprice or Cappadocia, which was visited by St Paul.

Gunay said: “There is great diversity in Turkey and we want to bring these aspects to the attention of the British public.”

The destination plans to target cultural tourists, those on a shoe-string budget, and even those looking for health treatments by visiting some of the country’s medicinal spas.

While Gunay would not confirm how much the country will spend on marketing the additional attractions, he said Turkey had the money in place to spend as much as is needed.

He added: “We do not have any limits to our budget as such, Britain is a very important area for Turkish tourism, therefore whatever the needs are is what the budget will be.”

Gunay added the country received 1.9 million British visitors last year and is hoping to break the 2 million mark this year.

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