SUBJECT :From eco-tours in the wild and environmentally conscious retreats on beaches, the Odisha government has gone completely green as far as the state’s tourism is concerned. 

Bhubaneswar, Jan 24, 2021: From eco-tours in the wild and environmentally conscious retreats on beaches, the Odisha government has gone completely green as far as the state’s tourism is concerned.

Although the state is primarily known for two locations--Puri Beach and Konark Sun temple--the Odisha government is now opening up paths to lesser known and unexplored locations in the state, keeping in mind their ecology.

“In the last budget session, there was a 400 per cent hike in tourism budget. We want people to explore the unexplored in our state, and there has been active social media engagement by our chief minister.

“But we are not interested in aggressive promotion. Instead we want tourists to become our brand ambassadors,” Odisha Tourism Minister Jyoti Prakash Panigrahi said.

One of the major components of this endeavour are the eco retreats that promote the idea of luxury camping at different locations across the state.

As part of this programme, a temporary retreat is set up over a span of three months, allowing tourists to experience the best of what the state has to offer.

“For many years, tourism was not a priority for Odisha, but we have worked on it over the last two years. Through the eco-retreat initiative, we want to highlight and showcase some of the hidden gems of the state,” Vishal Kumar Dev, Secretary, tourism department said.

The eco-retreat initiative was started by Odisha a year ago with one location-Konark. The success of the programme led the government to add four more locations this year - Daringbadi, Satkosia, Bhitarkarnika and Hirakud.

Dev said the Konark retreat saw “81 per cent occupancy” last year, and the Daringbadi location had recorded 60 per cent occupancy for January 2021.

“All eco-retreats function under ecologically compliant practices, including solid and sewage waste management systems,” a tourism ministry official said.


Source: in.news.yahoo.com