The Tourism Department of Uttar Pradesh and district officials from Agra in collaboration have come up with several initiatives to enhance tourism in the region. Agra has been ranked as the number one tourist destination in the country by the Indian Tourism Ministry and further efforts are being made by the government in order to improve the basic amenities and conveniences available for tourists.
The Need for Improvement
The Taj Mahal and Agra Fort are the prime tourist spots that attract visitors in Agra, and the other main hotspots that bring in tourists include sites like Itmad-ud-Daulah, Chinni Ka Roja, Mariyam’s tomb, Jama Masjid, Keetham Lake, Baptist Church and Mankameshwar temple. More than 6, 24,000 foreign tourists and 4.18 million Indian tourists visited the Taj Mahal in the year 2010.
Special Buses for Tourists
Local boarding and traveling facilities in Agra are being vastly improved to facilitate tourism, and local bus services have been launched for this purpose. To ease up tourist travel within the city, four new luxurious air-conditioned buses, styled according to Mughal heritage, have been scheduled to start from the Agra Cantonment Railway Station and cover Fatehpur Sikri, Agra Fort, Sikandra, and Taj Mahal in one trip to Agra.
Tourist brochures, guides and LCD television sets are provided in these buses so that travelers can gain exposure to authentic information about these monuments. To promote the influx of women travelers to the city, women bus conductors and constables have also been stationed.
The Rise of Tourist Villages
In order to allow tourists to discover the native culture from a close angle, four villages around the city have been marked as Tourist Villages. For increasing the tourist inflow to Bhateshwar Ghats, initiatives to improve the local facilities and connectivity have been taken. Bhateshwar Ghats lies at a distance of about 70 km from Agra.
Improved Security Measures
To ensure that a general air of safety and security is provided, policemen in Agra will be equipped with the latest gadgetry. Policemen with flawless verbal skills will be put on patrol around the major monuments in Agra in new bikes and cars, which will be funded by the revenue collected through the entrance charges levied at these monuments.
A makeover at Fatehabad road’s Tourist Thana, an exclusive police station meant for addressing tourist pleas, is underway. Women policemen will be provided scooters for patrolling purposes, in a bid to curb the menace of eve teasing. Helpline numbers will also be provided at the entrances to the various monuments, so that tourists can register their complaints instantly. Agra is a popular city included in most of Golden triangle tours.
Agra has been the most prominent tourist destination in India thanks to the Taj Mahal, and these new measures are expected to boost the tourist influx further during the coming months.