Himachal Pradesh Enhances Air Connectivity to Unlock Hidden Tourist Gems
In a bid to boost tourism and achieve an annual target of five crore tourist arrivals, Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu has announced plans to strengthen air connectivity in Himachal Pradesh. The government is in the process of constructing 16 heliports across the state, including remote and tribal areas, to provide tourists with quick access to unexplored destinations. This initiative aims to make Himachal Pradesh more accessible to travelers and stimulate the local tourism industry.
The first phase of this project involves the development of nine heliports in various districts, including Hamirpur, Kangra, Chamba, Kullu, Lahaul-Spiti, and Kinnaur. Detailed project reports (DPRs) for some heliports have already been received, with others in progress. Additionally, the Kangra Airport is undergoing expansion to accommodate high-end tourists.
In the second phase, seven more heliports will be established in districts such as Chamba, Bilaspur, Sirmaur, Shimla, Una, and Solan. Necessary approvals have been sought for several heliports, paving the way for their development. Once fully commissioned, these heliports are expected to significantly benefit the state’s tourism sector.
Chief Minister Sukhu emphasized the importance of accessible destinations in attracting tourists, boosting the local tourism industry, and contributing to the state’s economy. Tourism plays a vital role in Himachal Pradesh’s economic growth, providing employment and self-employment opportunities for the local youth.
Highlighting the government’s commitment to tourism development, Chief Minister Sukhu announced plans to make Kangra district the “Tourism Capital” of the state, with an estimated investment of approximately Rs. 3000 crore. This ambitious initiative is expected to bring forth numerous new projects in the near future.
The meeting on this tourism-enhancing project was attended by several key officials, including Revenue Minister Jagat Singh Negi, Education Minister Rohit Thakur, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Anirudh Singh, Chief Parliamentary Secretary Sunder Singh Thakur, Principal Private Secretary to the Chief Minister Vivek Bhatia, and other senior officers.