Monday, 15 February 2016

Hot water springs in Uttarakhand

Hot water springs are very much in vogue for the tourists in the developed countries. In India, it is still in the underdeveloped stage. There is no systematic tourism in this sector. Uttarakhand has around 62 hot springs out of total 320 in India. The state department is taking step in the direction to develop these geo – thermal hot water into wellness spa. These places could become world class destination for the tourists interested in hot water spring spa. The whole idea is to replicate the already established system at other places. This concept of tourism is especially designed for high end tourists, the niche segment. At initial phase the places which have been selected are as follows:

1                    Gaurikund in Rudraprayag
2                    Madkot in Pithoragarh
3                    Rishikund on the way to Gangotri
4                    Suryakund in Chamoli

It is estimated that more than Rs. 400 crore will be spent on each destination and would take at least three years to complete. These places shall have spa complex, yoga / meditation centre, golf course, dance and aerobatics complex and amphitheatre. The implementing agency shall be Uttarakhand Tourism Development Board (UTDB), which shall be assisted by New Zealand Geo Thermal Association,  Geo thermal Institute of University of Aucland and Geological Survey of India (GSI).

The GSI has already conducted the survey of the above destinations in November, 2015 and a competent agency is also set to put the report regarding feasibility, economics and viability of these projects. The report shall cover the exact source of hot spring, analysis of fluid type / geochemical and geological understanding.

The market of hot water spring is very lucrative and is estimated around USD 50 billion and is considered one of the fastest growing tourism segments. The countries dominating this segments are China and Japan with 51% and 43% with Europe.  India hosted the first meeting of the Hot Spring Industry Forum in Delhi in October 2013 which paved the way to the formation of Global Hot Spring Initiative.

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