India’s Madhya Pradesh to draw international travellers in 2017

Published on : Monday, November 21, 2016

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Travel And Tour World took an interview of Mr. Hari Ranjan Rao, the secretary of tourism for the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh at the World Travel Mart 2016, organized in London.


Travel And Tour World: Can you tell us what is new in your state? What is going to be the big thing in 2016-2017?


Mr. Hari Ranjan Rao:  Madhya Pradesh, which is traditionally known as the tiger estate of the country, is known for beautiful national parks, tigers and its heritage. In 2016, we are now talking about the beautiful nature, the water bodies of Madhya Pradesh, which has been now recently opened up. These large water bodies have been created out of large dams. There are submerged islands and wildlife on those islands. This has become very new and very latest attraction of Madhya Pradesh, which was otherwise known for its wonderful heritage and wonderful wildlife.


Travel And Tour World: Is your approach for marketing key area going to be different this year? What kind of key areas are you looking at?


Mr. Hari Ranjan Rao: Madhya Pradesh tourism has been focusing prominently on the domestic tourism market in India, but now we are opening up and we plan to do an international marketing also in the coming year and thereafter. We are likely to go international, so we will have our campaign, media campaigns for international markets as well.


Travel And Tour World: Which areas in the world will you be targeting? Is there any particular area in the world you would like to attract more? Who in the world is most likely to come to your state?


Mr. Hari Ranjan Rao: Well, we have traditionally been receiving two distinct kinds of tourists to Madhya Pradesh. Those, who are absolutely passionate about the wildlife, tiger and wildlife parks at the Madhya Pradesh, and we have another type tourists, who are very deeply motivated about the heritage, sculpture and architecture of Madhya Pradesh. So, we have been getting tourists from both the fields, now we are also focusing on the younger generation who want to explore the world, India, Indian heritage and culture. This is something, which is very vividly displayed in Madhya Pradesh.


Travel And Tour World- If you could pick out three key things that you would recommend people to see in your state, what would they be?


Mr. Hari Ranjan Rao: Well, number one, we have nine national parks, 25 sanctuaries; you must come to Madhya Pradesh to see the tiger at the tiger state of India. Number two, three world heritage sites, which are Khajuraho, which is a beautiful temple, Sanchi, which is a Buddhist stupa and Bhimbetka, which is a world heritage site for prehistoric rock paintings. This is the second thing in terms of heritage that you must come and see. Third, you must come and see Madhya Pradesh’s people and culture, the lifestyle of people, the cuisine, the food, the homes, tribals. So, I think the culture and the people is the third thing, which should attract tourist to Madhya Pradesh.


Travel And Tour World– You mentioned food, how is the food different in your area of the world than other parts of India?


Mr. Hari Ranjan Rao: Well, I think Indian cuisine is loved world over. You will be surprised and happy to know that Madhya Pradesh is a state, where after every hundred miles you will find that there is this change in taste of food, the change in geographical features, and change in languages. But still the food of Madhya Pradesh, especially in Indore region, is known so well in the world today. There are areas you can actually go and have some street food in the middle of the night and you will find that there are thousands of people strolling in the streets to have that street food. That is the kind of place that everyone must go and enjoy in Madhya Pradesh.


Travel And Tour World– That is a very forward thinking. So you got the old and the new mixed in together.


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