Odisha tourism gradually coming back to normalcy

 Tuesday, December 29, 2020

The tourism sector in Odisha was hit harshly by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, it has started getting back to normalcy with easing of restrictions and opening of major temples and tourist destinations across the State.

The Puri-Konark marine drive, the most sought after holiday destination witnessed an isolated look throughout the year due to the pandemic. But now, it is gradually witnessing positive times with gradual coming back of visitors.

However, Ramachandi beach on the marine drive, which usually throngs with visitors during December and January, saw only handful of visitors amid Covid-19 guidelines.


“We can’t express our pleasure in words as we are out of our house after a long hiatus. People especially children and youths were mentally depressed due to Covid restrictions that forced them to remain indoors for a long time,” said Namita Das, a tourist at Ramachandi beach near Konark.

Such scenes are common at Pir Jahania beach near Astarang in Puri, Udaypur and Talsari beach in Balasore and Golden beach in Puri.

The Chilika Lake and Satpada dolphin sanctuary which always see a huge tourist footfall, reveal a completely different picture this year. The number of tourists has marginally declined due to the communication barrier induced by covid-19 lockdown.

“In December, this spot used to witness a huge congregation of tourists. But this time around, footfall has dropped to 20%. Our boating business has collapsed due to the declining tourist inflow,” said Debasis Das, a tourist guide at Satapada.

Decline in travelers has also unfavorably affected the hotel and hospitality sector. Hoteliers said that their business will go up only after train and air services pick up the pace. “We request the Government to ply more trains at least to the neighbouring States so that we can expect more tourists from outside the State. It will give a boost to already collapsed tourism sector in Odisha, said Debasis Patnaik, a hotelier.

It is expected that the tourist inflow will gradually increase as the temples across the State are reopening gradually in a phased manner.


The Sri Jagannath Temple in Puri has already reopened. Similarly, Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneswar has reopened, while other temples are also set to reopen in the coming weeks.

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