The idea that Goa is merely a “sun, sea, and sand” tourist destination needs to be modified, according to the state’s tourism minister Rohan Khaunte.
He added that the ‘Dekho Apna Desh’ initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi will support the promotion of spiritual and wellness tourism initiatives by the Goa administration.
The Minister was addressing after kicking off a three-day celebration at Marcel in North Goa district to commemorate the customary Chikhal Kalo (playing in mud) holiday.
Goa is solely well-known for its western lifestyle, nightlife, and party scene. That is being presented as Goan culture. We must alter people’s perceptions, he stated.
People are becoming much more interested in spiritual and wellness tourism in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Khaunte. The government, he noted, wants to encourage ethical and sustainable travel.
“We need to alter people’s perceptions of tourism to go beyond just focusing on sun, sand, and sea. Instead, we can promote Goa as Dakshin Kashi, or southern Kashi”. The Minister suggested that we should advertise our temples.
He continued by saying that the world needed to be informed about the history of these temples and the role that monarchs like Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj played in their preservation.
“With the opening of the Madgaon-Mumbai Vande Bharat Express and the new airport at Mopa, which connects to locations like Dehradun and Nashik, connectivity to Goa has substantially improved”, according to the Minister.
He continued by saying that “Goan celebrations like Sao Joao and Chikhal Kalo need to be promoted.”
“We travel to Spain to perform at Tomatina festival. But at home, we don’t draw attention to the mud festival called Chikal Kalo”, he remarked.