More than 70,000 foreign and local travellers visited Kyaiktiyo archaeological zone in Kayikto Township from January to August in this year, according to the office that collects entrance fees from foreigners at the Kyaiktiyo Pagoda.
According to data provided by the office, the numbers of tourists visiting the archaeological zone were: 15,603 in January, 14,822 in February, 14,894 in March, 8,001 in April, 7,336 in May, 4,980 in June, 5,959 in July, and 4,696 in August.
“The entrance fee was increased to Ks10,000 for each foreigner from last year and the office earned over Ks762 million from the entrance fee,” said an official from the office.
“In past years, and for the first two months of 2017, the entrance fee was handed over to the state development committee, which deducted 2 per cent to cover their expenses before transferring the rest to the state government fund. In March, the collection office began directly transferring revenues to the state government fund,” he said.
“Most pilgrim visitors to Kyaiktiyo Pagoda are from Thailand. Others are from Vietnam, Laos, China, Japan, Germany, Spain and France.” he said.
A total of 125,500 foreign and local travellers visited the archaeological zone in 2016. In 2017, 125,217 foreign and local visitors visited it, according to Kyaikto Township municipal office.
More than three million local and foreign pilgrims joined the religious festival at Kyaiktiyo Pagoda held from the full-moon day of Thadinkyut to the full-moon day of Kasone each year, according to the pagoda board of trustees.