'There is nothing in the world you cannot find in India'
‘Everything has variety in India. There is no uniformity or one kind.
‘I also love the fact that there are always sensible people here, even when everything around you is collapsing,' says former chief election commissioner JM Lyngdoh, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com why they love India.
I love the variety in our land. The people, the culture, the languages, the food, the customs, the geography, the history -- everything has variety. There ... Read More
Top 12 things you must experience in India
As India turns 66, we bring you the top 12 things you absolutely must experience in India.
Our beloved country turns a year older this August 15. As part of a special series, we bring you a list of things you must experience if you haven't already -- from celebrating Christmas in Goa to visiting the Taj Mahal and spending a night in a house boat in Kerala... there is always something to do for everyone ... Read More
Italy proposes promotion of 'wedding tourism' with India
Italy and India can increase tourist footfalls by promoting new trends like 'wedding tourism', which has been a big draw for both the nations, a senior envoy said.
"Between India and Italy, there is a high potential of increasing the number of tourists. There is a strong possibility to increase flow of tourists from respective countries," Daniele Mancini, Italy's Ambassador to India, told reporters here yesterday.
"A number of new avenues have opened up. There is boom ... Read More
Trekking the Har Ki Doon Trail in India's Himalayas
By HENRY WISMAYER
On the trail in northern India, the views may be heart-stopping—but the hiking is not
PEAK PERFORMANCE | Looking toward Swargarohini mountain in the Garhwal Himalayas
THE GRAFFITI SCRAWLED on the bunkhouse exterior struck me as rather impatient. Surely there were worse places to be waiting around than the Garhwal Himalayas, where the peaks of northern India jostle with the mountains of Tibet and Nepal.
Yet among the Sanskrit prayers that had been written on the ... Read More
Dhaka Journal: Five Things to Do in the ‘Concealed’ City
By Tripti Lahiri
Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, may have been named after a local tree or a 16th-century temple. Or the name may come from the Bengali word that means “covered” or “hidden.”
That’s an apt name for a city whose charms, as is often the case with large South Asian cities, are not immediately visible to the naked eye. Not that there are hordes of visitors trying to uncover those charms, although Bangladesh is ... Read More
Would like to be brand ambassador of Kerala: Patki
- Jisha G.Nair
Kottayam: Mesmerized by the beauty of back waters in Kochi, Amruta Patki expressed her great excitement to be in Mollywood. The former Miss Earth Air was in Kochi for a two- day shoot of an upcoming Malayalam movie 'Paisa paisa'.
Amruta Patki, hailing from a middle class Maharashtrian family, bagged the beauty pageant 'Miss India Earth' award in 2006. She was adjudged Miss Earth Air 2006 amongst contestants from 82 countries. She has since ... Read More
Indians largest chunk of tourists to Sri Lanka
R. K. Radhakrishnan
(Picture: A cultural extravaganza by Sri Lanka Tourism campaign in Hyderabad.)
Indian tourists far outnumber those from other countries visiting Sri Lanka. This has again been confirmed after the September 2012 numbers were compiled and put out by the Sri Lanka Tourism.
In September this year, a total of 71, 111 tourists visited Sri Lanka. Of this, 13,888 (19.5 per cent) were Indians. The next largest group, country-wise, was from the United Kingdom, 8,586. ... Read More
Five Reasons to Visit Jaipur
By John Krich
Jaipur can disappoint at first glance. The obligatory first stop on tours of North India's so-called Golden Triangle — and the entry point to Rajasthan's legendary desert — is swathed in dust and modernization's haphazard sprawl. It's easy to lose sight of an Old City created by farsighted 18th century maharajas as the country's first urban grid. And the facades of this so-called Pink City (it was painted as such for a ... Read More
Taj Mahal replica planned in Dubai
A local company in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) plans to build a replica of India’s famed Taj Mahal in Dubai, officials said on Wednesday.
Salim al-Musa, the chairman of the multi-purpose development Falconcity of Wonders, said the monument is to be called Taj Arabia and will be similar to the massive mausoleum in Agra but several times bigger.
The structure will also house apartments and shopping malls, including bridal shops, and will be surrounded by Moghul-style ... Read More
Lee to promote Australian tourism in India
According to 'The Daily Telegraph', Lee has been named a "Friend of Australia" under Tourism Australia's advocacy program.
As part the promotion, he would be welcoming over 70 Indian travel agents and take them around the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground on Wednesday.
The tour operators are here to participate in a six-day India Mega Family and Workshop and are also visiting Sydney and the Hunter Region in NSW, the Gold Coast in Queensland and Perth and Fremantle ... Read More
Travel to Jaipur in double-decker train
New Delhi, Aug 24 (IANS) Now travelling to Jaipur will be easier, with the Indian Railways Friday starting its second double-decker air conditioned train from Delhi to the Rajasthan capital.
The double decker coaches can carry 120 passengers, up from 78 in the normal ones.
The first AC Double Decker train was introduced between Howrah-Dhanbad in 2011, Railway Minister Mukul Roy said after flagging off the train from Sarai Rohilla station here.
The minister said the AC Double ... Read More
Exploring Galle, Sri Lanka
The sights and scenes in Galle, an ancient town in Sri Lanka that was granted Unesco World Heritage status in the late '80s.
Three years after the end of a brutal, 26-year civil war, those predictions may finally come true. The travel sector already has witnessed a comeback: Compared with 438,000 arrivals in 2008, 1 million tourists are expected to visit this year. By 2016, the government is targeting 2.5 million tourists, hotel industry sources say.
Sri ... Read More
Welcome to Kuttikkanam
Welcome to Kuttikkanam (on the way to Thekkady) - a mystical
village town of dew drops, tea leaves and hill stations. At an altitude
of 3500ft, you can idle away three days in the nadan or continental
food courts, buy hill products, share recipes, tour the sloppy-curvy
tea plantations and laugh to heart’s content viewing the stage
An opportunity for NRIs (coming to Kerala for holidays but only
to be trapped in the labyrinth of duties and responsibilities) to empty
their ... Read More
Goa beaches head for makeover with shack policy
Panaji: Soon, no ducking behind a sand dune or a coconut palm to change in or out of your swimwear. The Goa beach experience is about to undergo a dramatic change with the state government formulating a shack policy, complete with freshwater showers and toilets.
Much to the delight of tourists and frequent visitors to Goa, the state government is in the process of finalising a policy for shacks as well as water sports, apart from ... Read More
Going on Faith
By DR.ABRAHAM VERGHESE
The morning I arrived in Trivandrum, the capital of the south Indian state of Kerala, I met my friend Vinita, a Hindu, who promised to accompany me on a visit to the Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple, a place that is generally off limits to nonbelievers. Though my family is from Kerala, we are Christians, a community dating back to A.D. 52 with the arrival of St. Thomas on these shores. “Doubting” Thomas converted Brahmins ... Read More
Kerala Tourism to hold first-ever road show in Saudi Arabia
Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Tourism is holding its first-ever road show in Saudi Arabia from Sunday in a bid to attract more tourists from the Gulf kingdom to the state, an official statement said Friday.
"Saudi Arabia is the biggest market for outbound tourists in the Gulf region. We want to invite travellers from Saudi Arabia to Kerala," said state Tourism Minister A.P. Anil Kumar in the statement here.
The first road show would be held in Jeddah on ... Read More
Thrissur's Pooram Festival attracts hundreds of devotees, tourists
In this annual festival, caparisoned elephants are the main attraction.
Sharing her views with the media on Tuesday, British tourist Quincott Fray termed the Thrissur Pooram as a beautiful and memorable experience.
"I am really having a marvellous time here seeing your Pooram and seeing these lovely elephants and festivities. You have a really great festival and a lovely city here," said Fray.
Artistes from the various parts of state also entertained the visitors with their performances.
As part ... Read More
Married women celebrate Gangaur Festival in Rajasthan
Gangaur is a significant festival of Jaipur, especially meant for the women. Gangaur festival is widely acclaimed and celebrated throughout the state of Rajasthan. The word Gangaur is derived from two words, 'Gan' and 'Gauri' which are synonyms of 'Siva' and his consort 'Parvati' respectively. The festival of Gangaur starts with the subsequent day of Holi and persists for about 2 weeks. Gangaur is celebrated in the honor of Goddess Gauri, who is considered as ... Read More
48 Hours in Bali
By Elaine Lies, Reuters
Bali - Lush tropical landscapes, intricate Hindu temples, long stretches of beach fringed with palm trees, and traditional dances both graceful and furious are all part of the charms of this resort island that keep visitors coming. Many luxury hotels in Bali
offer family friendly amenities and great outdoor activities.
Yet venture away from the main tourist drag and it’s still possible to spend hours strolling through rice fields, stopping ... Read More
Tourism in Kerala
Kerala has the reputation of being the most beautiful state in India and its slogan, “God’s Own Country”, certainly reflects that! It has been named one of the “ten paradises of the world” by the National Geographic Traveler magazine and is one of the most popular tourism destinations in India. From beautiful backwaters to Ayurveda massages and tea plantations to beaches, it is obvious to see that all this popularity is for a very ... Read More
Brand Kerala shines at Spanish tourism fair
Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 24 (IANS) Visitors were swept off their feet as Kerala Tourism unfolded its mesmerising grandeur at the just-concluded International Tourism Trade Fair (FITUR) 2012 in Spain, with visitors and trade professionals showing tremendous interest in 'Brand Kerala', an official said here Tuesday.
FITUR 2012 show at Madrid, a meeting point of tourism professionals from all over the world, is considered the second biggest gathering of travel and tourism players with around 13,000 exhibitors ... Read More
Rs. Five Crore for Kottayam Tourism Development Schemes
The Heritage Zone stretch at Thazhathangadi where the new walk will come up as part of the beautification project. Photo: Special Arrangement.
Half a dozen tourism projects are being implemented in the district at a cost of Rs. Five crore, district Tourism Promotion Council this year.
Top on the agenda is the Thazhathangadi Beautification Project, being taken up at a cost of Rs.72.23 lakh. According to Jijo John, secretary DTPC, the project will be implemented ... Read More
Oprah visits the Taj
US talk show queen Oprah Winfrey visited the Taj Mahal Thursday, spending more than an hour while her camera crew captured the 17th century marble marvel from various angles for her new talk show.
She was followed by scores of journalists and camera persons, which made her security a daunting task for her bouncers.
At Vrindavan, she made an unscheduled stop at the Ma Dham widows' home. This caused quite a ruckus between her security personnel ... Read More
Celebrities Toast God’s Own Country in Twitter Chat
(PictureM Meg Matthew with Sarah Luis)
New Delhi, January 18: The chatter in the twitter world is becoming unabashedly flattering in celebration of God’s Own Country.
A host of British celebrities, who were wowed by the exotic destinations of Kerala while holidaying there, have beckoned their followers on the social networking site to visit the state and savour its ethereal beauty.
British actor and fashion czarina Sadie Frost leads the list. “Its bin amazin. spice boat cruise on ... Read More
Turkey wants more tourism, cultural exchanges with India
New Delhi, Jan 9 (IANS) Stating that India has strong relations with Turkey, Turkish ambassador Burak Akcapar Monday said tourism and cultural exchanges between the two countries need to be boosted.
'Our countries have had strong bilateral relations for a long time but the tourism and cultural exchange between the two countries needs to be boosted,' said Akcapar at an event organised by the Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) to announce the Indian Travel ... Read More
Can foreign tourists help US economy?
The 22-year-old Argentine recently dropped more than $5,000 on food, hotels and clothes in Las Vegas during a trip that also took her to Seattle's Space Needle, Disneyland and the San Diego Zoo. But she doubts she will return soon.
“It is a little bit of a headache,'' said Ocampo, a student who waited months to find out whether her tourist visa application would be approved.
More than a decade after the federal government strengthened ... Read More
India looks to Buddhism to boost flagging China tourism
Eyeing China's fast expanding outbound tourism market, which has, so far, largely bypassed India, the Indian government has launched a tourism campaign targeting the world's fastest-growing Buddhist population with a direct sales pitch: visit India and reconnect with your faith.
Indian officials hope that promoting the ‘Buddhist circuit train' in China, which has been in operation since 2007 and stops along several pilgrimage sites in northern India, can help boost the low numbers of ... Read More
Centre to promote tourism in Ayodhya
Uttar Pradesh, November 7, 2011: The central government has said that it would spend rupees 10 crore for the financial year 2011-12 for promoting religious tourism in Ayodhya, the birth place of Lord Ram.
Union Minster for Tourism Subodh Kant Sahay yesterday said that rupees 5 crore have been sanctioned for development of the city on the basis of proposal submitted by the state government.
He said that the remaining was still pending because the state government ... Read More
Fatima Bhutto vows to return ‘home’
New Delhi, October 22: Kerala’s ‘love affair’ with international celebrities is on an upward swing.
Pakistani writer Fatima Bhutto, renowned Israeli playwright Motti Lerner, and `Israeli writer of the year’ Savyon Liebrecht are the newest additions to the growing fan list of God’s Own Country among top celebrities.
“I felt at home in Kerala. I would like to return,” says Fatima Bhutto, the granddaughter of former Pakistan Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who visited the ... Read More
31.2% growth in tourist visa on arrival
Radheshyam Jadhav, TNN
PUNE: During the month of October 2013, a total of 1,911 tourist visa on arrival (VoAs) were issued under this scheme as compared to 1,457 VoAs during the month of October 2012, registering a growth of 31.2%.
A growth of 28.5% has been recorded in the number of tourists availing of the tourist visa on arrival ( VoA) scheme during the period January to October, 2013. A total number of 15,770 VoAs have ... Read More
Kerala Tourism workshops
Kerala Tourism will organise two workshops this week (Nov 18) in association with Facebook to explore opportunities in the social media. ‘Travel goes social’ is a special campaign for travel and tourism professionals with a day-long workshop being held here on Wednesday.
The workshop will travel to Kochi the next day where the theme will be ‘Travel and Tourism: Leveraging social media and information technology’.
... Read More
Gujaratis cancel foreign holidays due to rupee fall
AHMEDABAD -- The significant depreciation of the Indian rupee has compelled scores of well-heeled Gujaratis to put off or even cancel their plans for a dream vacation abroad during the 20-day Diwali break beginning next month.
Many of the 50,000-odd footloose Gujaratis who form 40 per cent of the total outbound tourists from the country every year around this time have instead decided to satisfy themselves with a domestic trip to Kerala, Goa or Himachal Pradesh.
What's ... Read More
Gaming commission may monitor Goa's casinos
Panaji, July 17 (IANS) The unshackled run of Goa's casino industry for more than a decade could just come to an end next month. It had to take a death to bring this about.
According to Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, a gaming commission to regulate operations of both onshore and offshore casinos will ensure that the gambling operations play by the rules defined by the state and not by the 'house', a term conventionally used to ... Read More
Kerala tourism - a record arrival
Kerala tourism has again consolidated its position in the tourism sector by attracting a record 1.07 crore domestic tourists and 7.03 lakh foreign tourists to the sate during 2012. The total revenue both direct and indirect from the tourism taken touched 21125 crore in 2012 compared to Rs 19037 crore in 2011.
... Read More
Goa bans drinking alcohol on beaches
Panaji: Goa government has banned drinking liquor on beaches in a bid to curb littering and nuisance caused to women tourists.
However, one can continue to enjoy drinks at designated places like beach shacks, Goa Tourism Director Nikhil Desai told PTI.
"The ban has been imposed under Goa Tourist Places (Protection and Maintenance) Act which gives the right to the state government to ban things which create nuisance in the tourism zones. The act envisages to protect ... Read More
KERALA MODEL OF TOURISM HAILED
UN Conference on Trade and Development in Geneva has hailed Kerala’s model of Responsible Tourism with ecofriendliness and inclusive as its main stay.
The meeting was attended by experts, policy makers and departments from the developing and developed nations as well as representatives of international organizations and civil society. Delegates from carribean and African countries showed interest to replicate RT model in their countries. Kerala has become a model for Tourism Development for the entire India ... Read More
SASI THAROOR IN THE ROLE OF QUIZ MASTER
Union Minister of state for Human Resource Development Shasi Tharoor will soon don the role of a quiz master to promote tourism in God’s own Country. The career diplomat turned politician represents Thiruvanthapuram constituency in the Lok sabha .The online video quiz for Kerala Tourism will kick off in May and go on for two months, contestants from any part of the world can join the show. The questions will be on kerala’s ... Read More
AWARD FOR KERALA TOURISM KUMARAKAM PROJECT
Kerala Tourism responsible tourism model at Kumarakam linking local community to the hospitality industry has won the national award for the best rural tourism project.
Kerala also bagged honors in three other categories at the National Tourism Awards for 2011-2012. Launched in 2008, kerala Tourism’s pioneering responsible tourism model in Kumarakam forged partnerships with Kudumbashree to sell fruits and vegetables to tourists in kiosks.run by its units and with hotels and restaurants in the area to ... Read More
India wins three prestigious travel awards
Source : IANS
New Delhi, Dec 13 (IANS) India has won three top tourism awards from the World Travel Awards (WTA), including for being the world's best destination.
Apart from winning the award for best destination, it also bagged the award for world's leading tourist board award for its "Incredible India" campaign and for world's leading tourist attraction for Taj Mahal, a world heritage site.
Accepting the award at an event here Wednesday evening, Tourism minister K. Chiranjeevi ... Read More
Kerala roadshow to woo tourists to shopping festival
Source : IANS
New Delhi, Nov 26 (IANS) Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi Monday flagged off a unique roadshow to woo tourists for the forthcoming Grand Kerala Shopping Festival (GKSF) beginning Dec 15.
The GKSF is being held to promote Kerala as an international shopping destination. State government officials said the road-show was planned to make GKSF popular with both the foreign and domestic tourists.
"Happening during our peak tourism season, the GKSF will aim to tap ... Read More
The eco friendly desert festival – Rajasthan
Meenakshi Sinha, TNN
It's the time for festivals and one's not talking about Diwali. As the capital braces for the many music and art festivals in the coming weeks, Rajasthan has already hosted the Jodhpur RIFF. Now its time for the first music, arts and culture festival set in the Thar Desert - titled 'Ragasthan' - an eco-friendly festival working towards sustainable collaborations with local artisans.
Endorsed and supported by the ICCR (Indian Council of Cultural Relations), ... Read More