Come April 2015, Goa Tourism will give tourists an unforgettable experience in the sky and the sea with the launch of Hot Air Balloons and Amphibious vessels. Two leading agencies have been selected for providing these high-end tourism services which will assure a dedicated, safe and thrilling experience. Camping Retreats Pvt. Ltd., a renowned Delhi-based agency, has been selected to provide the Hot Air Ballooning service, while US based consortium with D’Souza Leisure Pvt. Ltd. Goa has been selected to provide the unique Amphibious vehicles service in the State.
The idea of initiating these products came from the Goa Tourism Development Corporation Limited (GTDC) as part of the larger plan to introduce new services for tourists in Goa. Buoyed by the success of White Water Rafting and the women’s taxi services in 2014, GTDC has set April 2015 as the target to launch these new ventures.
Tourism Minister Shri. Dilip Parulekar said, “Goa Tourism will be focusing on enriching the tourism experience of visitors to Goa through the medium of adventure and allied activities.” “Both adventure services will focus on highlighting Goa’s hinterlands and will give tourists an opportunity to explore the rich geography of the state via the sky and the waterways,” said Chairman of Goa Tourism Development Corporation Limited, Shri Nilesh Cabral.
[su_frame]~These two initiatives will highlight the state’s hinterlands and maximize the use of waterways ~The Amphibious vehicles will facilitate ‘Hop On Hop Off’ tours across the state ~Hot air ballooning safaris will also be operational in Goa soon[/su_frame]
According to preliminary data available with the GTDC, as many as six Amphibious vehicles will be introduced utilizing Goa’s wide networking of ferry ramps. The vessels can operate on water and land and will be equipped with all facilities required for effective and smooth conduct of operations. This venture will further facilitate ‘Hop On Hop Off’ tours along Goa’s inland waterways and chain of jetties and ferry ramps, bird watching tours and eco-tourism tours. As many as 34 passengers can be accommodated per trip for duration of 30 minutes to an hour.
These boats will be manufactured in Goa with US technology in collaboration with AGCL- Goa. The Amphibious vehicles will be the first of its kind for use by civilians in the country. The Hot Air Ballooning sSafaris will be designed by Camping Retreats Pvt. Ltd. and will induct two hot air balloons at the introductory phase. The initial plan is to introduce hot air balloon tours to Dudhsagar Water Falls.
The Managing Director of Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC), Shri. Nikhil Desai said, “With the launch of the two new products Goa Tourism will have a solid portfolio to present to the world and India and increase footfalls further in the months to come.”
Shri. Desai said that the joint ventures between GTDC and the selected agencies will generate a committed Rs 60 lakh per annum to GTDC alone. “The Corporation will not be investing in these ventures but will provide networking, promotion, marketing and permissions required by the service providers,” he added. He further elaborated, “Goa needs to constantly reinvent itself as a dynamic tourist destination. The two new products will give a boost to eco-tourism and also provide employment opportunities for Goans both directly and indirectly.”