Himachal sees tourist influx due to snowfall, new year celebrations
(Sourced from PTI)
After the recent snowfall in Himachal Pradesh, people from across the country are thronging its tourist hotspots to usher into the new year. "Most hotels in Shimla, Manali, Dalhousie, and Kufri were sold out from Christmas till December 27 and are expected to be fully booked from December 31 till January 3," said Mohinder Seth, President of Association of Himachal Pradesh tourism industry stakeholders.
The state government allowed the entry of tourists in July after a three-month ban due to the pandemic, but the tourist hotspots of the hill state witnessed the highest influx on Christmas. The entire hospitality industry in Manali was shut for almost eight months due to the pandemic and has gained momentum in December.
"The police has divided Shimla into seven sectors for security and eight sectors for traffic purposes to control the crowds on New Year," Shimla Superintendent of Police Mohit Chawla said. A strict vigil will also be kept on the tourists through CCTV cameras and drones. It will help ensure safety and look out for any danger or suspicious activities.
As per government-owned Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (HPTDC) officials, almost all properties are running on 100 percent occupancy, which is remarkable amid the current COVID-19 situation. "With the onset of New Year accompanied by heavy snowfall, there is around 65 percent occupancy in hotels and other tourist-related establishments in Dalhousie," said Manoj Chadda, Chief Patron, Federation of Hotels and Restaurants Association Dalhousie.