New Tourism Policy: Focus On Development Of Tourism Products - Eastern Mirror
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New Tourism Policy: Focus on development of tourism products

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By Thejoto Nienu Updated: Apr 08, 2024 6:37 pm
New Tourism Policy
A file photo of a man dehusking rice grains the traditional way. (EM Images)

KOHIMA — With the Nagaland Tourism Policy 2024 in place, highlighting the potential areas of enhancement ranging from eco-adventures and culinary delights to immersion travels, the Tourism department is said to be taking a development-centric approach to boost the sector.

Ecotourism

Highlighting that an integral part of ecotourism is in the promotion of recycling, energy efficiency, water conservation and creation of economic opportunities for the local communities, the policy dwells on Nagaland’s vast potential for ecotourism development.

It made mention of some popular ecotourism spots in the state including Khonoma, Dzulekie, Dzukou valley, Mt. Saramati, Green Dikhu Project, Benreu, Sendenyu Bio-Diversity.

The department also claimed that the state is a viable location for promoting cinematic tourism in the near future.

New Tourism Policy
A file photo of Nagas in traditional attires taking part in a gate pulling ceremony in Kohima. (EM Images)

Agro-tourism  

This form of tourism can prove to be a popular concept for a state like Nagaland where over 70% of the population is still entirely dependent on agriculture as their main source of income, the department stated.

The Apple Festival at Thanamir village in Kiphire district; Kiwi farms in Phek district; Pineapple plantation in Medziphema etc. are some of the few examples that can be promoted under this genre, it stated.

The department also noted that the dragon fruit and other tropical fruit farms in the foothills of Nagaland can also come under agro-tourism. However, it stressed the need to build basic farm houses with modern amenities (like showers, clean linen, European type commodes, solar lighting etc.) to accommodate prospective tourists.

Adventure/sports tourism

Nagaland is blessed with lofty mountains, terrains and spiraling trekking routes, which makes the state ideal for adventure and sports tourism such as mountaineering, trekking, zip lining, gliding, mountain biking, cycling, rafting, angling and rock climbing.

Some of the identified potential spots for adventure sports in Nagaland are Dzukou Valley, Dzuleke, Mt. Japfu, Mt. Saramati, Satoi Range etc.

Doyang and Tizu rivers are ideal spots for river sports due to availability of varieties of fish like local trout, Indian masheer and salmon, and tourists have something new and exciting to look forward to in near future, both in terms of culture of natives and natural terrain.

On paragliding which was recently introduced in Pfutsero and Khezhakeno region of Phek district, the policy suggests that the Department of Tourism should collaborate with the Department of Youth Resources and Sports to promote this sector.

Heritage tourism

Noting that Nagaland does not have many heritage sites compared to other states in the country, the department emphasised on developing important sites of historical importance.

Some identified historical sites include the World War II Cemetery, Kohima; medieval Kachari kingdom ruins, Dimapur; Khonoma village, Kohima; historical site at Naginimora, Mon; Chungliyimti, Molungyimsen and Impur (first Baptist mission in Nagaland) in Mokokchung district; Naga Heritage Complex, Kisama in Kohima district, skull stone cist and stone monuments associated with head hunting among the Konyaks, pot burial sites at Laruri and Mimi villages, Kiphire district, and prehistoric caves and rock shelter sites in Mimi region, etc.

Cultural tourism

The policy highlighted the organisation and promotion of traditional festivals in Nagaland, which reflect the state’s rich cultural heritage and also serve as major attractions for tourists. Towards this, the state government, in collaboration with the NEZCC and the Department of Art and Culture, will make efforts to ensure that tourism is extended to all tourist destinations in Nagaland.

Additionally, priority will be given by the government to the infrastructural development, improvement, and marketing of these places.

Music tourism

The new policy also recognises music as an integral part of the life of the Nagas as the Naga oral tradition is kept alive through the media of folk tales and songs.

While boasting that Nagaland is the first state in the country to introduce ‘Music as an industry,’ it reiterates that the Task Force for Music and Fine Arts (TaFMA) was created by the government to encourage Naga musicians to take up music as a profession rather than a hobby. Besides, the Hornbill National Rock Contest is an integral event of the Hornbill Festival.

Monsoon tourism

One unique sector of tourism potential highlighted is the monsoon tourism as Nagaland has a largely monsoon climate with high humidity levels. “The region looks the best in monsoon when everything is so green and drenched that offers travelers a glimpse into nature’s beauty during this time of year,” it stated.

In addition to Kohima, there are several other destinations worth exploring during the monsoon season where visitors can marvel at the beauty of waterfalls such as the Triple Falls at Seithekema, Phesama and Khonoma, and the Dzukou waterfall, which take on a new level of splendour amidst the rain.

Culinary tourism

While the policy highlights the various potential of tourism, culinary tourism is one among those that could fascinate the travelers as Nagaland’s diverse and fascinating food offers a captivating culinary journey into the heart of the region’s rich traditions.

Every Naga tribe contributes its distinct culinary identity resulting in a diverse array of dishes showcasing resourcefulness through traditional cooking techniques, along with authentic, traditional and innovative experiences.

Wellness/herbal tourism

Noting that Nagaland has rich biodiversity in terms of flora and being located in one of the 25 hotspots regions of the world in terms of biodiversity with forests covering an area of 13,318 sq.km, it claimed that Nagaland possesses a vast variety of herbal and medicinal plants.

This exotic feature creates great potential for promotion of wellness tourism in Nagaland. This form of tourism is currently being practiced in a small scale by indigenous people in the remote regions of Nagaland having innate knowledge of herbal medicines and massages that provide holistic healing and rejuvenation.

Experiential/rural tourism

Another focus area is ‘Experiential or immersion travel/experience’ form of tourism which allows people to experience a particular place by connecting to its history, people and culture by living in it.

The new policy noted that development of rural tourism can be one of the few activities which can provide a solution to promote these various types of tourism and that the increasing levels of awareness, growing interest in heritage and culture and improved accessibility, environmental consciousness are some factors which are shifting the trend towards rural tourism.

Textile tourism

Dwelling on Nagaland’s vibrant handicrafts, textiles, woodcarving, lacquer work and handlooms, it points out that over the years the interest of the tourist is undergoing a paradigm shift from leisure to a more sustainable way of life.

In this context, textile tourism is likely to be the most promising new tourism product, which can be tapped for promotion and preservation of the arts and crafts of Nagaland.

For this, the department will strive to revive rural arts and crafts and involve women and skilled artisans to give unique experiences to the tourist by conducting immersive-themed handicraft tours to Nagaland.

Further, the new policy also expounds on MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) tourism, golf tourism, cinematic/film tourism and medical tourism.

Also read: New Tourism Policy: Emphasis on synergy in infrastructure development in Nagaland

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By Thejoto Nienu Updated: Apr 08, 2024 6:37:07 pm
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