Mumbai: In a bid to boost tourism in Maharashtra especially post COVID-19, the state cabinet on Wednesday cleared Caravan Tourism Policy. As reported by Free Press Journal, the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation in September last year had released a draft policy seeking suggestions and objections from various stakeholders. Private players can procure caravans for tourism and as supportive infrastructure for these vehicles, the government will allow setting up of caravan parks. The government hopes to promote caravan tourism considering that Maharashtra is known for scenic beaches, forts, mountain ranges, hill stations, forests, heritage sites, caves and dams. While these attractions have immense potential for caravan tourism, they said, the moving ‘houses’ will have great demand in remote areas where hotels are scarce.
According to the policy, caravans and camper vans will be able to provide all the facilities to tourists in areas where permanent construction is prohibited. Caravan parks will be places where recreational vehicles can be parked and all the facilities including water refill, battery charging and disposal of sewage will be made available. In addition, there will be food courts and information regarding local sights. These parks will be set up in the buffer zone of a forest, near a dam or foot of a fort.
The Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation plans to promote caravan parks and caravans through public and private sectors and PPP mode. MTDC will provide land, while others will require to develop various amenities and facilities at the parks.
It will be promoted and marketed under MTDC’s Mahabhraman scheme. The caravan parks will remain operational 24X7 during tourist seasons and will be connected by fair-weather roads from main carriageways. Each park will come upon a minimum of 2.5-acre space and will have a maximum of 20 parking bays. Further, such centres will have to adopt a tourism-friendly policy which also benefits the local community and is eco-friendly.