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The Untapped Power of History in India: Will Heritage Tourism Be the Dominant Trend in 2018?

The Untapped Power of History in India: Will Heritage Tourism Be the Dominant Trend in 2018?

Cultural tourism as defined by the World Tourism -"trips, whose main or concomitant goal is visiting the sites and events whose cultural and historical value has turn them being a part of the cultural heritage of a community".

Culture and Heritage has always been a major object of travel for several years. In between the trend had changed and people were looking at more Beach or relaxing destinations. We again see a change where today's traveller's look at exploring the Cultural and heritage aspect of the place they visit. We have observed that the Traveller's like to understand a country or regions' culture, lifestyle of people, history of the country, art & architecture and any other elements that are important part of day to day life.

In recent years, 'culture' has been rediscovered as an important marketing tool to attract travellers who have special interests in heritage and arts. As we see the growth pattern in the travel industry, Culture and Heritage tourism has always played a major role and is one of the most important segments of the tourism industry. I feel that Cultural and heritage forms a base for most travel planners.

Cultural tourism has a positive economic and social impact, we also believe that this segment also helps in preservation of cultural heritage and monuments and further facilitates tourism in rural areas and helps in boosting their economic and social growth.

Culture Tourism - Different styles :

Inner Circle - represents the more traditional or basic elements of Cultural tourism and can be split into Tourism of art heritage - which relates to cultural assets and products of the past and tourism of art which relates to Presentation of visual arts, modern architecture, literature etc.

Outer Circle - Is the way of life or style of living of the population in a particular place and can be split into life style - elements such as cuisines, traditions, folklore etc and creativity - fashion, graphic design, cinema, entertainment etc.

In some places both these aspects form a offering which are mutually complementing each of the them.
Based on above, following are some subcategories of cultural tourism which are able to contribute to and motivate visitors:
- Heritage Tourism
- Art Tourism
- Urban Culture Tourism
- Rural Culture Tourism
- Contemporary Tourism

If we look at our country, most states in our country are known for the Culture and Heritage and each part has its own charm.
If we look at may of our country and we will find that from Kashmir all the way down to Kanyakumari, each state has different culture and heritage to office.

Most popular amongst international travellers has always been the Golden Triangle for first time visitors covering the Historical parts of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur and also later on they explore other parts of our country and explore the culture and heritage.

A few Travel Tips for Heritage tourism:
- Plan in advance so that you can avail cheap airfares
- Some hotels offer advance purchase rates, always check with a offline travel agent or a travel portal for such deals, both can get you great deals if planned in advance
- If you are on a shoestring budget, use public transport and intercity buses / trains instead of flights
- Check on Monument opening and closing timing and also check if the monument is closed on a certain day of the week. (for e.g. Taj Mahal is closed to Tourists on all Fridays)
- Popular monuments such as Taj Mahal OR Elephan Ride at Amber fort, reach early so that you spend less time waiting to get the entry ticket or elephant ride
- Factor in Monument entrance fees as they can be quite expensive in some parts of the world and can increase your trip cost
Points to remember while visiting Heritage monuments:
- The heritage monuments you may visit anywhere are historical and national treasures please do not litter at these places or scribble on the walls
- Do not use flash while taking images in halls having historical paintings
- If you are visiting religious monument, please follow the dress code as accepted by Local culture and traditions.

Indians should also explore the Cultural tourism aspect of India apart from making international trips. Indian states of Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh also have a lot to offer to clients with interest in Cultural tourism. We have also seen improvement in Indian's visiting the most popular monuments as well as opting for other monuments which are off beaten or remotely located.

This article is contributed by Jay Kantawala, Founder, WIYO Travels.

Author bio: Jay Kantawala decided to launch his own travel brand after a good amount of professional travel industry experience. Being a young and enthusiastic travel brand, WIYO travel was established in 2006, specializing in unique travel experiences and customized solutions for the discerning traveller.

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