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Kerala aims to unlock its beach tourism potential fully

Kerala aims to harness its 580-kilometer coastline, adorned with exquisite seaside retreats such as Asia’s longest drive-in beach in Muzhappilangad, to boost tourism. According to Tourism Minister P.A. Mohamed Riyas, there’s untapped potential in beach tourism that the state must explore. The government plans to connect various tourist spots along the extensive coastline spanning nine out of its 14 districts.

During the inauguration of the district’s inaugural floating bridge at Papanasam Beach, the seventh in the state, the minister emphasized how these additions will enhance tourists attractions of these coastal districts for tourists.

“There is a huge potential for beach tourism in Kerala, and it will be utilised effectively,” he said. “Kerala’s coastline is ideal for water sports. But there are a few projects now. If effectively utilised, it will immensely contribute to the state’s revenues.”

He said many investors had come forward at the first Tourism Investors’ Meet held in the state capital last month, expressing their interest in investing in beach tourism.

Including these proposals, the minister said, the government intends to implement more beach tourism projects in public-private partnerships. A master plan has been formulated to comprehensively develop Varkala as a major entertainment and pilgrimage centre in the state to be implemented in 2024.

“New projects like the floating bridge in Varkala, which currently has many water sports activities, will attract more tourists here,” Riyas said. The floating bridge has been set up by the department of Tourism in association with the District Tourism Promotion Council, Kerala Adventure Tourism Promotion Society and the Municipality of Varkala.

The bridge has a 100-meter length and a three-meter width with pillars on both sides. At the bridge’s end is a platform of 11 meters long and seven meters wide, enabling visitors to enjoy the scenery far off the sea.

Constructed with 1,400 high-density floating polyethylene blocks, the bridge, held by 700 kg anchors, is equipped with all protective measures, including safety boats, life jackets and lifeguards. Around 100 visitors can enter the floating bridge at a time and move along the sea’s waves. The entry will be from 11 am to 5 pm. (Source: The Hindu)

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