Tourism has been one of the worst affected sectors worldwide amid the coronavirus pandemic. India, which invited millions of tourists every year, from within the country too, also shut its state borders ever since the first lockdown was announced in March.
While the total number of Covid-19 cases in India are close to 32 lakh, the country is gradually opening up its inter-state tourism and hospitality sectors. Here's a list of all the places that are open for tourists now.
A majority of historical monuments like the Red Fort, Humayun's Tomb, Qutub Minar and other cultural centres like the Dilli Haat, Garden of Five Senses, etc. have reopened for tourists in the national capital with social distancing and proper screening measures in place.
2. Himachal Pradesh
Home to some of the most popular hill stations like Shimla, Dharamshala, etc., the state was shut for outsiders since March. It opened for tourists in July with strict restrictions in place.
According to the latest reports, the state Cabinet has relaxed most of the restrictions imposed earlier. While the visitors will be required to obtain an e-pass, the duration of minimum stay of the tourists has been reduced from 5 days to 2 days.
The Uttarakhand government has also opened its borders for visitors; both, within and outside the state, including international travellers. However, the Chardham Yatra will remain restricted only to devotees from within the state.
The Valley of Flowers, a UNESCO world heritage site that usually remains open for visitors from June to October also opened on 1st August.
#NowOpen The Valley of Flowers is a legendary trek. From the moment you enter the valley, you have a sweeping view of its vast expanse covered in a layer of flowers. #uttarakhandtourism #simplyheaven pic.twitter.com/KorYldV2Qi— Uttarakhand Tourism (@UTDBofficial) August 1, 2020
Earlier in July, Goa also opened its borders for domestic tourists. While the state government allowed hotels to operate in Goa, reports suggest that most hotels have postponed their reopening till October-November.
Rajasthan has opened its monuments, parks and museums along with the two tiger reserves at Sariska and Ranthambore.
6. Madhya Pradesh
Madhya Pradesh also announced the opening of tourist activities along with reopening of state-run hotels and resorts. Home to 11 national parks and 24 wildlife sanctuaries including Panna, Ratapani and Bandhavgarh, the state has also decided to reopen them for tourists.
Karnataka is also one among the several states that have opened for visitors, earlier in July. While places like Coorg and Hampi are yet to decide about opening up after lockdown, tourist spots like the Mysore Palace, Nagarhole National Park and the temples are now open.
Just recently, the Karnataka government abolished all travel restrictions like the requirement of an e-pass and mandatory 14-day quarantine for people coming from other states.
8. Jammu and Kashmir
Jammu and Kashmir opened its borders from 14th July, during the first phase of reopening; but only for air travellers. The government has also issued SOPs for tourists.
Tourism in Jammu & Kashmir to open in a phased manner from 14th July; Govt of J&K issues guidelines for entry of tourists. In this phase, tourism limited to those arriving by air only. RTPCR testing of all tourists compulsory on arrival &tourists to have confirmed hotel bookings. pic.twitter.com/YeRmMjVDHH— ANI (@ANI) July 12, 2020
Social distancing is definitely a part of the new normal and tourism is no exception. While it is advised to stay home, you should do proper research to ensure if inter-state travel for tourism is safe or not.