SRINAGAR: Dozens of leading travel agents and tour operators from India participated in a familiarization tour conducted by the Vivinta by Taj Hotels and Resorts, Srinagar in collaboration with Indigo Airlines, at the sprawling Tango Hall of the hotel here today.
The main aim of the tour was to sensitize the participants on the importance of Kashmir being a preferred tourist destination and to remove the inhibitions connected with Kashmir especially after the September-2014 floods that the valley was not a conducive to domestic or international tourism.
Many tour operators especially from Mumbai were elated to witness firsthand the colour and charm that Kashmir is known for. We were shown around places yesterday and I was surprised to see the infrastructure which of course is the of world class quality, said Sadhana Rana of Planet Hospitality, Mumbai, referring to the auditorium at the SKICC.
Weve travelled all the way from Mumbai to invest in whatever little and big way we can, she said. Kashmir must forget all the bad that happened with it. Lets build Kashmir together.
The ladies out here have travelled all the way from Mumbai without their husbands to show it to Kashmir that we mean business, she said. Kashmir is very dear to us and it must come up to the expectations of all of us here.
During the interaction, Mr. Imran Ahmad of the Floriculture Department discussed how Kashmirs Tulip Garden is different from those around the world. Its a museum of many thousands of flowers let bloom at a single place which is unique to Kashmir, he said.
Mayuri Rajkonwar, Business Manager, Retail Sales, Indigo Airlines romanticised the idea of visiting Naseem Bagh, Hazratbal to witness the falling Chinar leaves. Im so eager to see the falling Chinar leaves and step on them barefooted, she said. I just love the idea and am planning a personal tour very soon.
Kashmir throws its arms open to all whove, at one or the other occasion in their lives, wished to visit this wonderful place on earth with all its love and hospitality, Mr Basharat Rashid, Director Sale, Vivinta by Taj Hotels and Resorts, Srinagar, told the audience. Nowadays, people are intrigued by the cultural and history and Srinagar being one of the oldest cities of the world offers an excellent opportunity to meet the requirement.
Pledging their unflinching support, the participants expressed hope that more tourists would visit Kashmir in future.
Sufism connects Kashmir with the rest of the country in ways more than one and it can form a basis for improved relations with regard to tourism in Kashmir, a member of the audience said.
Expressing gratitude over Indigo Airlines collaborating with Vivinta by Taj to make the event successful, Basharat Rashid said that Vivinta would always stand by all those who wished to participate in marketing Kashmir nationally and internationally. Its high time we banished the hype created my media with regard to Kashmir and do away with the safety-related inhibitions, he said.