Nirmalya Choudhury, Executive Director – Operations, JTI Group and Chapter Chairman (North East States) for IATO, believes that wildlife tourism encompasses learning about flora, fauna and understanding local communities as well
Now that the extended lockdowns and travel restrictions caused by the pandemic in India are slowly easing in many areas, a lot of people are already travelling or planning to travel in the near future. But, in a world yet to fully recover from the pandemic, the value for destinations with wide-open natural spaces away from bustling crowds and travel and accommodation facilities with a more environmentally conscious approach are proving to be more appealing for travellers.
Wildlife tourism has been on the rise in India for quite a few years now, but it is becoming a more attractive option for a lot more travellers in these unique times we are living in. Wildlife tourism in India is a great option for travellers in the current scenario as the experience of visiting a national park or a wildlife sanctuary is now not just about getting away from a busy life in cities and urban centres, but also being able to appreciate nature in a new light after having to coop up in close confines for months on end. Wildlife tourism is not only about appreciating the wildlife parks with their vast outdoors and the wildlife, birds, butterflies and forests but also enjoying interactions with the local communities living on the periphery of the wildlife sanctuaries and learning about their traditional nature-conscious ways of living, the local handicrafts and weavings, and the local cuisines. Wildlife tourism destinations in India are some of the safest places to visit and hopefully, we shall see more travellers thinking of a wildlife getaway when planning their next holiday. The only challenge is to ensure that all, and not just a few, famous wildlife parks receive a fair share of visitors.