India to host 'World Tourism Day' celebrations in 2019

India to host 'World Tourism Day' celebrations in 2019

A stilt walker walks around the mega tourism gala in New Delhi on Thursday. AFP

India has been chosen to host World Tourism Day celebrations for the World Tourism Organisation of the United Nations (UNWTO), in 2019, Tourism Minister K Alpohons announced on Wednesday.

This was revealed at a function organised here to present the National Tourism Awards 2016-17 on the World Tourism Day.

While Andhra Pradesh bagged the first prize for promoting “Andhra Pradesh Tourism” as a global brand, Kerala came second for comprehensive development of tourism. Rajasthan and Goa shared the third spot.

The Taj Gateway Hotel in Chikmagalur Karnataka won the best hotel award under the four-star hotel category.

“The Taj Gateway Hotel, Chikmagalur, which was opened in the year 1999, offers serenity, privacy and exquisitely restored colonial architecture. Located in the coffee district of Karnataka, the hotel offers the best of nature in its lap along with heritage to explore. The hotel surrounds the guest with tranquil sights and sounds of nature,” its award citation read.

A total of 77 awards were presented to the tourism industry stakeholders, state governments, central agencies and individuals by the Union Tourism Minister.

Addressing the event, Alphons noted that India has made “great strides” in the field of tourism during the last four years of the Modi government, saying that the sector has become “a major source” of employment and foreign exchange.

“The tourism sector needs to improve its hospitality services since it is the hospitality offered which is the distinguishing feature of India and gives it an edge over other countries,” he, however, said.


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