Tamil Nadu to develop sites

Apurva Varma, Additional Chief Secy to Govt, Tourism, Culture and Religious Endowments Dept, Govt of Tamil Nadu, claims that they are taking the initiative to develop infrastructure under various Central government schemes.

Nisha Verma

The Tamil Nadu Travel Mart, set to be held from September 19-21, is a good initiative to promote tourism to the state, claims Apurva Varma. “This will be a huge platform for showcasing Tamil Nadu. Right from hoteliers, wellness tourism providers as well as domestic and international travel products, buyers will get a taste of everything in Tamil Nadu,” he claimed.

Speaking on the sidelines of the National Conference of Tourism Ministers in New Delhi, Varma said, “A lot of deliberations took place and the minister took updates on the Swadesh Darshan and PRASAD schemes in different states. Tamil Nadu has been doing well and its efforts were appreciated. The minister also talked about homestays and Bed & Breakfast schemes, and we are in the process of finalising the guide- lines for the same.” Varma shared that the ministers had been assured that such meetings would now be periodical and that he looks forward to attending them.

Through the Tamil Nadu Infrastructure Development programme, we are hoping to develop as many as 291 sites across the state

Infrastructure development Tamil Nadu has undertaken a number of steps for the promotion and development of tourism in the state, shared Varma, adding that to strengthen the core activities of tourism, infrastructure development is crucial and is being supported by the Swadesh Darshan and PRASAD schemes, as well as funding through the Annual Development Programme (ADP). “In the short term, we are improving whatever is already with us, while in the long term, we are encouraging handholding in tourism. Through Tamil Nadu Infrastructure Development programme, we are hoping to develop as many as 291 sites. We also had a Global Investors’ Meet, where stakeholders signed hotels and other tourism projects,” he informed.

Spreading word across platforms Tamil Nadu Tourism has been quite aggressive in its promotional activities, constantly promoting the state through print media while looking to also aggressively market the state on a digital platform.

“We are also trying to improve our website and make it friendlier and more engaging, and in the next six months, you will see a lot of things coming from Tamil Nadu Tourism,” Varma shared.

Insisting that reaching out to the travel trade is an important part of their strategy, he said, “We are participating in all international travel shows, domestic travel marts, and roadshows. At ITB Berlin, we participated with 20 stakeholders.” They have similar plans for the upcoming India Tourism Mart (ITM) as well.

“We participated last year and will want to get a big space at ITM, which we want to attend with stakeholders. This offers a better perspective and expert guidance to buyers who have specific requirements, which only experts in the field can give. Whether it’s beach tourism, wellness tourism or adventure sports, stakeholders in the business can always give better information and convert queries into business. Hence, when we are under one roof together, there is more synergy,” Varma claimed.

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