Kolkata, March 6: With the pristine Arabian Sea in the west and the towering Western Ghats in the east, Kerala is all geared up to woo foreign tourists with its age old tradition of ayurveda, an official said Wednesday.
“Ayurveda draws in maximum foreign tourists. Therefore, we decided to provide a whole experience centred around the 1,500-year-old science,” said Kerala government’s tourism Information Officer Anil V.S. at a workshop here.
“There are government approved centres, spas, hospitals and resorts which have been graded in categories like ‘Green Leaf’ and ‘Olive Leaf’,” said Anil.
According to Anil, Kerala received 7.94 lakh foreign tourists in 2012, an increase from 2011′s 7.33 lakh.
“Most of the travellers were from countries like Norway, Germany, Australia and many Middle Eastern countries.
“This is mainly due to the workshops that we conduct in many foreign countries,” said Anil.
Kerala also launched mobile-based and IT-enabled services including mobile websites, WAP guide, Android applications and Bluetooth kiosks for foreign tourists, he said.
“Many Middle East travellers have the idea that India is not a clean country. But because of our workshops, this notion has changed and they are visiting the state and finding it hygienic,” clarified Anil.
Besides Ayurveda, the state’s backwaters are a huge crowd puller. Activities like paragliding, mountain biking and animal safaris are also enticing travellers from beyond the borders.