Kerala unfurls sustainable tourism initiatives
Responsible Tourism, which began modestly in the palm-fringed backwaters of Kumarakom in 2008 as an experiment has today mushroomed and fleshed out as the motto of Kerala's Tourism module. With a newly founded Responsible Tourism Mission and Kumarakom bagging the prestigious Responsible Tourism Award at the World Travel Mart, London, it is no wonder that the new tourism policy unveiled by Kerala focuses in depth at sustainable tourism initiatives. The policy also forms a major highlight of this year's domestic campaign. The revamped fare with an array of new tourism products was showcased at New Delhi on Friday.
"To ensure the accomplishment of a 100% increase in arrival of foreign tourists and 50% in domestic tourists in five years, a tourism regulatory authority has been formed. This would help put a stop to any unhealthy practices and guarantee better intervention of the Tourism Department through scrutiny and a licensing system," said Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Co-Operation, Tourism and Devaswom, Government of Kerala.
Kerala, voted the Best Family Destination by Lonely Planet, the Best Leisure Destination by Conde Nast Traveller and winner of six National Tourism Awards in 2016, offers the much-needed succour and adrenaline rush to its adventure-seeking traveller. Kayaking, trekking, paragliding, river rafting are a few activities that form a part of the eco-adventure package.
For art aficionados, the state endorses the dreamy lanes of Fort Kochi and a pilgrimage to the Kochi Muziris Biennale, which has changed the landscape of contemporary Indian art today and has helped make Kochi, the art capital of India.
For history buffs looking to transport themselves to another era, there is the Muziris Heritage Project. Another offering in the historical space is the Spice Route Project that rekindles the 2000-year old ancient sea links and shared cultural legacies with 30 countries.
"Most foreign tourists flock to Kerala to experience its cultural heritage but what we are trying to showcase is the idea that our culture isn't limited to performances on stage. It is ingrained in our way of life and the department is taking small but significant steps towards helping a traveller experience the richness of Kerala," said Rani George, IAS, Secretary, Tourism and Culture, Government of Kerala.
With the fifth edition of Kerala Blog Express, a unique social media outreach that brings together international bloggers and influencers just around the corner, Kerala is gearing up to welcome every kind of traveller.