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Himachal Pradesh: Heavy tourist rush in Shimla, Manali, Kinnaur; hotel occupancy reaches 90%

Increasing number of tourists in Himachal Pradesh this year indicates a promising season for state’s tourism industry

Written by  Jasleen Kaur -- June 08th 2024 02:36 PM
Himachal Pradesh: Heavy tourist rush in Shimla, Manali, Kinnaur; hotel occupancy reaches 90%

Himachal Pradesh: Heavy tourist rush in Shimla, Manali, Kinnaur; hotel occupancy reaches 90%

Shimla, June 8: Following the completion of the national election process, there has been a notable increase in the number of tourists visiting Shimla and other popular destinations in Himachal Pradesh. Concurrently, schools in the plains are currently on vacation, further contributing to the influx of visitors to the state’s tourist spots. The peak season is in full swing, with hotel occupancy rates ranging between 80 to 90 percent. In prime locations such as Shimla, Kasauli, Kinnaur, and Manali, occupancy has exceeded 90 percent and hotels are fully booked on weekends.

Rajeev Kumar, MD of the tourism corporation, said tourists were flocking to the hills to escape the intense heat of the plains. Last year, the tourism season was adversely affected by the monsoon rains. "However, this year, the increasing number of tourists in Himachal Pradesh indicates a promising season for the state’s tourism industry. The hotel occupancy rates are consistently high, ranging from 80 to 90 percent, with weekend bookings experiencing a surge," he added.



Meanwhile, the surge in tourism has led to long traffic jams in Shimla and other tourist areas, impacting tourism operations. The state has around 5,000 registered hotels, along with numerous unregistered establishments. Additionally, there are approximately 1,000 home stays operating in the region. Advanced bookings account for 80 percent of the total hotel occupancy. If the weather remains favourable, the tourism season is expected to continue until October.

Rajeev Kumar, a tourist, said the scorching heat in the plains was driving tourists towards the cooler climates of the hills. A hotelier attributed the increase in tourist numbers to the favourable weather conditions and the end of the election process. Last year’s monsoon had dampened the tourism prospects, but this year appears to be more promising.

The traffic congestion in popular tourist destinations such as Shimla is a significant concern, as it affects the overall experience for tourists and hampers the smooth operation of tourism-related businesses. Despite this, the high occupancy rates in hotels and home stays indicate a thriving tourism season.

- With inputs from our correspondent

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