International Ölüdeniz Air Games sweep parachuters off their feet
by Anadolu Agency
MUGLA, TurkeyOct 22, 2015 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Anadolu Agency
Oct 22, 2015 12:00 am
The International Ölüdeniz Air Games Festival, which kicked off on Oct. 20, will continue until Oct. 24. Co-organized by the Fethiye Tourism, Promotion, Culture, Environment and Education Foundation (FETAV), the Fethiye Municipality, the Turkish Aeronautical Association and Fethiye Hotel Managers Association (FETOB), the 16 edition of the festival includes 300 parachute jumpers from 40 countries and the world's 25 best acrobatic pilots for the opening ceremony. The parachute jumpers fell 1,700 meters during the opening ceremony. The visual feast orchestrated by the parachute jumpers were enjoyed by sports lovers as well as tourists.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Fethiye District Governor Ekrem Çalık said that his district is fortunate because of the unique geography it sits upon. Stating that Fethiye offers a variety of activities and natural beauties to ilocals and tourists, Çalık said Babadağ, the region where the air games are taking place, is the best place in Turkey to experience parachute jumping.
Çalık said that parachute activities increased 31 percent, despite overall tourism activities in Turkey falling this year. "As of today, Fethiye has welcomed 1.8 million tourists since the beginning of this year. Although the district experienced a 5 percent decline in the number of tourists visiting the region, the number of tourists that flew from Babadağ increased by 31 percent and reached 115,000. We expect this number to reach 120,000 by the end of this year."
The increase in the number of tourists parachute jumping is directly related to the recent renovation of airfields, tightened security measures, newly built roads and the introduction of new airfields in Babadağ. As parachuting experts in the region grow the district's reputation for aerial sports, Babadağ is one step closer to becoming the number one parachute center in the world.
Also speaking at the ceremony, Bekir Akyüz from the Turkish Aeronautical Association said Fethiye has been drawing the interest of extreme sports lovers for the last few years, adding that Fethiye will continue to host such festivals and organizations in the future. The air games in Fethiye will continue until Oct. 24.
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