SRINAGAR: The tourist inflow to Kashmir Valley in June was better this year with tourism players saying that 75 percent occupancy was witnessed in various hotels and guest houses.
“June has always remained the peak for tourist inflow in the valley, but this year there was an additional rush that is why there was 75 percent occupancy in the rooms in hotels, guest houses and houseboats,” Chairman Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Alliance, Faiz Bakshi told Kashmir Reader.
Bakshi, who is also president of Kashmir Hotel and Restaurant Owners Federation (KHAROF), said one of the reasons that why more tourists visit the Valley during this June month is that summer vacations in educational institutes in many states coincide with this month and after this month there is decline as monsoon approach and schools and colleges open.
“Even the central government employees along with their families visit the Valley mostly till June after which the rush decline,” he said.
Adventure Tour Operators Association of Kashmir (ATOAK), Rauf Tramboo claimed that the tourist season got a delayed due to the election related activities in the Valley.
“Tourists from most of the neighboring states like Punjab, Haryana and Delhi were cautious of their visit in May and it was rescheduled to June also being a reason for more inflow,” Tramboo said.
He said the tourists felt comfortable only when the elections were over, but thus far it was a very good season as compared to 2013 when hanging of Afzal Guru jeopardized the initial season.
Tramboo said after the elections in the Valley got over, family groups started to arrive and tourists from Gujarat and Maharashtra that from a major percentage of visitors too started visiting.
He also said flights were full of domestic tourists and per day around 6000 were arriving through air route. However, he said there were very few leisure tourists around 20 percent who visited the Valley between May and June.
“We are also expecting some tourists during Amaranth Yatra as some of them also visit other places also,” he said.
President House Boat Owners Association, Mohammad Yusuf Chapri told Kashmir Reader that this year it was a “very good season” as around 80 percent of our houseboat rooms was occupied.
“Just fifteen days before we had a very good occupancy rate in our houseboats and as usual the tourists rush declines. But thanks to Almighty around 80 percent houseboat rooms were occupied which is maximum,” Chapri said.