15 lighthouses to become tourist destinations
press trust of india
New Delhi, 14 July
Tourists can soon get a view of the Bay of Bengal from Gopalpur lighthouse in Odisha or of the Arabian Sea from Kanhoji Angre lighthouse in Mumbai, because soon they will be developed into tourist destinations.
The Gopalpur lighthouse in Ganjam district was a major landmark for sea travellers as it used to be a famous trade port, while the Kanhoji Angre lighthouse situated on Kennery Island had strategic importance for the Portuguese, the English and the Marathas as it stood at the entrance of the Mumbai harbour from the south. Other lighthouses identified for development as tourist destinations include Kanyakumari, Rameswaram, Mahabalipuram, Chennai, Vishakhapatnam, Chandrabhaga, Paradip, Aguado, Dwarka and Minicoy. These have been chosen by the tourism ministry and the shipping ministry to be developed as tourist sites
Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi has held discussions with Shipping Minister G K Vasan and Minister of State for Shipping Milind Deora and agreed to provide central financial assistance for the development of the 15 lighthouses as tourist destinations. Both ministries are of the opinion that the development of such lighthouses will not only protect national heritage, but also help in developing new tourist destinations. “The aim is to create awareness and educate people on the significance of lighthouses, their history and technology and offer tourists spectacular views of the splendid Indian beaches and seas,” a senior tourism ministry official said. “It would create a unique cultural and recreational experience for tourists which was in demand due to their remote, tranquil and serene locations. It would also create job opportunities for locals,” he added
Restoration of lighthouses, development of basic amenities and deployment of guides are part of plans. Out of 180 lighthouses in the country, 15 with historical importance will be taken up in the first phase.