Taj Mahal most ticketed ASI site for domestic travellers in 2021–2022
According to a new report released by the Union Ministry of Tourism, the Taj Mahal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was among the 10 most popular centrally-protected ticketed monuments for domestic visitors in 2021-22.
While the Mughal-era mausoleum was the most visited site during the period, the Red Fort and the Qutub Minar, both UNESCO-recognised sites in Delhi, were the second and third most visited sites.
On World Tourism Day, Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar released a 280-page report titled ‘India Tourism Statistics 2022’ at an event on Tuesday.
In India, “the number of foreign visitor arrivals (FTAs) during 2021 declined to 1.52 million as opposed to 2.74 million in 2020, registering a 44.5 per cent negative growth,” the research states.
The Taj Mahal was the most popular centrally-protected ticketed monument for domestic visitors in 2021-22, according to the report, which shared data from various sites under the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). The most popular centrally protected ticketed monument for foreign visitors during that time was the Group of Monuments at Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu.
The Group of Monuments at Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu was the most visited centrally-protected ticketed monument for foreign visitors during the same period.
According to the reports, the Taj Mahal received 3.29 million visitors, or 12.65 per cent of total domestic visitor footfall in 2021-22, followed by the Red Fort (1.32 million) and the Qutub Minar (1.15 million).
According to ASI data, the Group of Monuments in Mamallapuram received 0.14 million foreign visitors, followed by the Taj Mahal (0.038 million), the Tiger-headed Rock cut, and two other monuments, Saluvankuppam (0.025 million).
The total number of domestic visitors in 2021-22 was 2,60,46,891, up from 1,31,53,076 in 2020-21, representing a 98 per cent increase yearly.
According to the data, the total number of foreign visitors in 2021-22 was 3,18,673, a 23.4 per cent decrease from 4,15,859 in 2020-21.
The ASI safeguards 3,693 heritage sites in India. Many of these are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the Taj Mahal, Red Fort, Qutub Minar, and Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi, and the ruins of the ancient Nalanda University in Bihar.
ASI sites were closed for more than four months in 2020 due to COVID-19 and reopened in July with safety protocols in place.
The Vice-President stated in his speech that the last two years have been ‘very difficult’ due to the pandemic and that the tourism industry has been severely impacted. However, in retrospect, India knows the way forward, and the country is “out of the difficult period,” he said.
He also gave the keynote address at the National Tourism Awards 2018-19 event at Vigyan Bhawan. The annual award ceremony was held after a two-year hiatus due to India’s Covid outbreak in early 2020.
According to the ‘India Tourism Statistics 2022’ report, India ranked 54th in the global Travel and Tourism Development Index (TTDI) in 2021.
It also stated that while free trade agreements (FTAs) experienced “negative growth” in 2021, non-resident Indians (NRIs) and international tourist arrivals (ITAs) experienced “positive growth.” NRI arrivals increased by 52.6 per cent between 2020 and 2021.
The US, Bangladesh, the United Kingdom, Canada, Nepal, Afghanistan, Australia, Germany, Portugal, France, the Maldives, Sri Lanka, Russia, Iraq, and the Netherlands were the top 15 source markets for FTAs in India in 2021. According to the report, the top 15 nations will account for approximately 80.9 per cent of total FTAs in India in 2021.
According to the report, tourism remains an important source of foreign exchange for the country.
According to the report, tourism’s foreign exchange earnings (FEE) will be USD 8.797 billion in 2021, up from USD 6.959 billion in 2020, representing a 26.4 per cent increase.
Despite the COVID-19 prohibition, tourism grew steadily on a global scale in 2021, according to the report. According to the report, India received 677.63 million domestic tourist visits in 2021, an increase of 11.05 per cent from 610.22 million in 2020.
Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh have domestic tourists, with 140.65 million and 86.12 million, respectively.
According to the report, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu had the highest number of foreign tourist visits, with 1.26 million and 1.23 million, respectively.