SUBJECT :The state environment and forest department and the state tourism development corporation are launching a special tour package to Valmiki Tiger Reserve from December 15 in a bid to promote ecotourism 

By Sanjeev Kumar Verma in Patna

December 18, 2018: You can now spend a weekend stalking tigers and other wildlife in Bihar.

The state environment and forest department and the state tourism development corporation are launching a special tour package to Valmiki Tiger Reserve from December 15 in a bid to promote ecotourism in the only reserve for the big cats in Bihar, located around 290km northwest of Patna.

The two-day-one-night package would be available on weekends, i.e. Saturday and Sunday.

The tariff is Rs 2,800 per person and it includes the cost of journey from Patna and back, one night stay in the guest house of the forest department at Valmikinagar, food, jungle safari, boating on the Gandak river, canopy walk, cycling inside the jungle, visit to the elephant shed, and a film on wildlife. The forest department will also provide a guide to accompany the tourists during the tour.

While the forest department will take care most things including visit inside the reserve and food for the tourists, the tourism corporation will provide food and other amenities such as drinking water to the tourists during the course of the journey to and from the reserve.

The vehicle for the trip would be decided based on the number of tourists willing to visit the reserve on a trip.

“We have at our disposal 5-seater, 11-seater, 16-seater and 40-seater air-conditioned vehicles which would be used for this package,” a tourism corporation official said.

The first such trip will start at 8am from Patna on December 15. The bookings opened on Thursday, and the tourism corporation was happy with the response.

“A group of NIT Patna students has decided to avail this package in the inaugural trip. As their number is around 40 we would send our bus for this trip,” said the official.

Tourism corporation managing director Inayat Khan said: “We want to make this package tour a memorable experience for all those who avail it. The forest department and the corporation are jointly conducting this package in which we are playing the role of facilitator.”

Efforts to promote ecotourism at Valmiki Tiger Reserve are being made since 2012, and the footfall has increased continuously.

The number of tourists visiting the reserve has gone up from 1,921 in 2012-13 to 45,765 in 2017-18.

The government wants to increase the flow further and in October this year it had slashed rates of almost all facilities at the reserve by half.


Source: telegraphindia.com