BHOPAL: Tourist spots in Madhya Pradesh are teeming with tourists for New Year’s celebrations despite the growing number of Covid-19 cases in the country and the growing threat from the new Omicron variant.

Large numbers of vacationers from different parts of the state as well as the country have flocked to popular destinations in the state to welcome 2022. All hotels and resorts operated by the MP Tourism Development Corporation (MPTDC) as well as private ones in the state are full for the New Years weekend.

Wildlife destinations are favorites for tourists keen to celebrate the New Year. “We don’t have a single piece to spare in our units in Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Pench and Panna National Parks,” says MPTDC General Manager, S Vishwanathan.

Visitors to Pachmarhi

All rooms in these units are reserved until January 2. Hanuwantia cottages and tents are also fully booked, as are hotels and resorts in Orchha, Madhai, and Amarkantak. Pachmarhi is also packed with tourists.

Pachmarhi attracts tourists from Maharashtra, Gujarat and West Bengal. “People have not been able to visit the tourist spots for almost two years. And so, they come out in great numbers, ”he says. Reservations had started in October. In addition to the MPTDC’s regional and marketing offices, reservations were made online and through trip planning portals like MakeMyTrip and Yatra.com. The company operates 66 hotels and resorts with 1,281 rooms in the state.

Tourists enjoying a hot air balloon ride at Mandu Utsav in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh on Thursday

Tourists enjoying a hot air balloon ride at Mandu Utsav in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh Thursday | Anand Shivre

According to Vishwanathan, all reception, kitchen and housekeeping staff at the MPTDC have been fully immunized. Guests must also be provided with vaccination certificates.

Om Tours and Travels owner Bhopal Girish Kesharwani says there is no room at private hotels and resorts in Pachmarhi, Ratapani and other wildlife destinations in the state.

He says tourist spots in the state are full as people avoid far-flung destinations like Goa and Andamans for fear the Covid situation will worsen in the days to come. “At least 50% of hotel and resort bookings in Goa and Andamans made through us have been canceled within the past 15 days,” he said.

According to Kesharwani, most European countries are in disgrace due to restrictions on international travel. “Among foreign countries, state residents only travel to the Maldives and most of them are on their honeymoon,” he says.

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Posted on: Thursday December 30th, 2021 11:22 PM IST