Goa wants to push tourists towards hinterland

August 24th, 2011 - 12:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, Aug 24 (IANS) Beach tourism had reached saturation point and the government now wants tourists to head to the hinterland to discover the state’s relatively unknown wonders, a senior official said.

“Beach tourism in Goa is saturated. It is time for us to look beyond,” Pamela Mascarenhas, Panaji deputy director tourism, told reporters Tuesday.

“Goa is known for its hospitality. If you want to pee you can always walk into any home and ask them to permit you to use their toilet,” Mascarenhas said in response to a question about lack of infrastructure in the state.

“The move towards the hinterland is also an India tourism initiative which aims to promote local culture and handicraft by exposing it to the tourists who come to Goa,” Mascarenhas said while launching a television travel show to promote Goa’s hinterland treasures such as temples and forts.

Goa receives nearly 2.5 million tourists annually, nearly 500,000 of which are foreigners.

The hinterland tourism initiative aims to diversify Goa’s tourism bouquet by tapping the nearly dozen odd forts, temples, spice farms and wildlife sanctuaries among others as part of the holiday experience.

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