Seaplane mooted for coastal Karnataka: C P Yogeeshwara | Mangaluru News – Times of India

MANGALURU: The tourism department to introduce a seaplane to connect coastal Karnataka with neighbouring states for promoting tourism in the state.
Minister for tourism, environment and ecology C P Yogeeshwara said that a proposal in this regard will be submitted to the central government soon.
The tourism department has plans to give a major fillip to health tourism, temple tourism and beach tourism in coastal Karnataka, by providing infrastructure under a special tourism package, Yogeeshwara said at an interaction with journalists organised by the Dakshina Kannada District Working Journalists Association, here on Saturday.
“We have plans to introduce a seaplane on the 320km coastline, under the Sagarmala project. It will also connect Kerala, Goa and Maharashtra, as part of a tourism circuit. A detailed plan is being prepared, and it will be submitted to the central government for approval. Meanwhile, we are also mulling on introducing yacht tourism with the participation of investors in coastal Karnataka,” he said.
On a heli-tourism proposal mooted by the New Mangaluru Port Trust (NMPT), the minister said that the port had received 25 international passenger cruise vessels last year, but lack of proper transportation makes it difficult for foreign tourists to visit important tourist destinations in Karnataka.
“They arrive on cruises for a short visit. Hence, the introduction of helicopters will help them to visit major tourism destinations like Hampi, Belur and Halebeedu, along with local tourist spots. Hence, the NMPT has requested the government to make arrangements to introduce heli-tourism through private operators. They will be developing a helipad and other necessary infrastructure at the port. The heli-tourism planned for Mysuru is expected to begin within 45 days,” he added.
To facilitate the development of tourism in the coastal areas, the government will take the necessary steps to clear CRZ hurdles, he said.
“We will relax rules in the CRZ, on the lines of Kerala. Similarly, we will discuss with chief minister B S Yediyurappa and other ministers, to reduce the tax on tourist taxis, to attract tourists from other states,” he added.

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Sagar Biswas

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