By Reya Mehrotra
The intermittent shutdowns for a year and a half sparked a thirst for travel among people like never before. Thousands of people have invaded hill stations and beaches to take a break from their stay at home. According to a report by Yatra.com, stays, car vacations, work vacations, etc., are some of the new travel trends. The joint Thomas Cook India and SOTC Travel survey, Third Holiday Readiness report (June), identifies areas in India that tend to become vacation hotspots.
In the first four months of the year, tourism exploded in Kashmir. With direct flights to Srinagar, hotel reservations were full until April. Now, as restrictions fade, Kashmir prepares to welcome tourists again. The tourism department had also carried out an aggressive campaign to attract tourists, which resulted in the filming of a few films there.
Goa is where the party begins. The condition of the beach has attracted tourists since the end of the closures. Popular Goa beaches include Calangute, Baga, Candolim. Popular places are Grand Island, Dudhsagar Waterfalls, Fort Aguada, Tito Street and more. A number of people have also chosen to travel to places like Goa to work remotely from places with good internet connection. For workstations, bookings from metropolitan cities such as New Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai are on the rise.
The scenic mountains and natural landscapes of Himachal Pradesh have attracted the most tourists since the opening of the closures. Images of traffic jams on the roads leading to the state have gone viral. The tendency to travel long distances by car where accommodation is isolated is at the root of the rush. Places like Shimla, Manali, Kasol are the most popular destinations in Himachal.
The hill station of Pune is known for its greenery and calm. Safety and hygiene being a priority, travelers prefer mountain resorts, due to their natural environment and their low population density. Tiger Leaping, Tikona Fort, Bhaja Caves, Bhushi Dam, Karla Caves, Duke’s Nose are some popular tourist attractions in Lonavala. Disinfection and security measures are paramount, which is why Yatra launched the “Clean Pass” to ensure that security measures are in place in its taxis, bus service and partner hotels in India. Their “Yatra Service Assured Packages” guarantee the implementation of disinfection and precautionary measures in their partner hotels.
Kerala’s tranquil backwaters call for a long vacation. Kerala is famous for its houseboats, waterfalls, green hills, ecotourism, tea plantations, Ayurvedic treatments and architecture. Travel trends like stays and revenge trips among others are attracting tourists to Kerala. For stays, Saturdays are the peak times, followed by Fridays and Sundays for properties with good stay options. Revenge journeys have also gained ground. It just means making the most of the unlock period and planning getaways and trips after a long absence from travel. Travelers also book closer to travel date due to the uncertainty of travel restrictions.
Gujarat’s hill station, Saputara, is a popular tourist destination. Its popular spots include Sunrise Point, Vansda National Park, Hatgadh Fort, Saputara Lake, Sunset Point and more. A number of travelers prefer hotels with adequate sanitation and security processes. Thus, an increase in bookings for four and five star hotel properties has been noted. The percentage of reservations for four- and five-star establishments is also much higher than for other hotel categories.
Speaking of international travel, Abu Dhabi to Dubai once again became a tourist attraction after unlocking. The big city has a number of tourist places to visit. Its most popular destination is the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, the city’s iconic building. Mangrove kayaking tours, the popular Louvre Museum, Ferrari World theme park, which replicates the thrill of Formula 1 racing, boat trips, and more, are other popular hotspots and tourist attractions to visit. Abu Dhabi. Desert safaris to Liwa Oasis or Al Khatim Desert are also very popular.
Even before the lockdown, the Maldives were a popular vacation destination due to their proximity to India. Known for its crystal-clear waters and seaside resorts, the Maldives offers a good vacation option for couples or families. Besides proving to be a quiet getaway, the break can be packed with activities like snorkeling, water sports, dolphin and whale watching, and scuba diving. It is also popular for its beaches and spas. Its Old Friday Mosque, Male, Hulhumale Island, National Museum, Kudahuvadhoo Island, Gan Island, Utheemu Island, Male Fish Market, etc. are a few places to visit.