KATHMANDU, Nov 16: Ilam district of Province 1 is organizing a tourism festival to promote three destinations of the district listed in the government's 100 tourist destinations.
Places like Kanyam, Fikkal and Shree Antu that made their way to the list of 100 tourist destinations will be promoted through the Suryodaya City Tourism Festival being organized from November 30 to December 4.
The event will feature cultural program, sports competition, discount market, tea testing, photo exhibition and wall painting, among other events being held in Shree Antu, Pashupatinagar, Gorkhe, Kanyam, Fikkal, and Panchakanya areas.
The Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation recently allocated Rs 1 billion for the development and promotion of the 100 tourist destinations that it had identified. The ministry had allocated Rs 500 million for the first phase of the implementation of 100 new destinations program. It provided Rs 5 million to local units to build necessary infrastructure at the selected destinations.
The 5-day festival is being organized as a preparation to make Visit Nepal Year 2020 campaign successful, according to the organizers. The main objective of the festival is to achieve the municipality's long-term vision of prosperity, organic agriculture, ecotourism and financial equality. Organizers of the event said that the program will promote tourist destinations of the district and contribute to the economic development through sustainable tourism.
Suryodaya Municipality is also preparing to make a working procedure for hotels and homestays to maintain consistency in the service charge during the festival.
The municipality has 176 hotels, homestays and resorts in Shree Antu, Fikkal, Gorkhe, Kanyam, Pashupatinagar and other places of the municipality. Speaking at a press conference in Kathmandu on Friday, Rana Bahadur Rai, mayor of Suryodaya Municipality said, “The municipality has a capacity to accommodate 3,750 people in hotels, homestays and resorts.” Over 500,000 domestic and international visitors are expected to participate in the festival. The municipality welcomes 300,000 visitors annually. There are 63 small and big tea factories in the municipality.
The festival is being organized with an investment of Rs 5 million. “Although the budget allocated for the program is only Rs 2.5 million, provincial and federal governments will assist with remaining investment,” said Rai.
Addressing the event, Former Prime Minister Jhala Nath Khanal, who hails from Ilam, said the municipality was one of the most beautiful places of Nepal. “The place has access to roads, electricity, hotels and homestays to accommodate tourists.”
The organizers are expecting visitors from bordering India as well.