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EghtesadOnline: The media in the UK say the resumption of direct flights to Iran by major airlines has already made the Islamic Republic as one of the hottest tourism destinations with one travel agency already reporting a whopping rise of 200 percent in sales of tours to the country.

The Irish Independent said in a report that Iran is being viewed by tourists as the second most affordable country to fly to after the United Arab Emirates.

"Our data shows Iran is already on the radar as the UK's second most affordable long-haul country to fly to after the UAE," the daily quoted Andrew Shelton, managing director at, as saying.

"Now British Airways is back in Iran, other airlines may follow - Air France re-launched their service in April this year - and flight prices may fall further."

The report further added that the reopening of Iran’s Embassy in London, the lifting of sanctions, and the relaxing of travel advisories earlier this year had already resulted in rising bookings, according to ILNA.

G Adventures (, which offers a 14-day Discover Persia tour to Iran through land, has reported that sales are up 200 percent year-on-year, the Irish Independent reported.

The report has quoted Rachel Wasser, the company's global product manager, as saying that "magnificent mosques, diverse history and unrivalled hospitality" are specific drawcards for Iran.

Iran is internationally regarded as among the world’s top 20 countries with the highest number of tourism attractions.  The country is home to 19 UNESCO-designated World Heritage sites.

Official figures show that Iran hosted above 5.2 million tourists last year and that this had generated a total income of above $8 billion for the country.

Iran tourism Iran flights