Bengal government develops tourist circuit linking seaside resorts

A West Bengal government development agency is setting up a tourist circuit linking Digha, a coastal town in Purba Medinipur district, to another popular resort town of Mandarmani along the 29.5 km Marine Drive, a said a manager. The Digha Shankarpur Development Authority is implementing the project and the works are almost complete, he said. ”Due to the lack of an integrated circuit linking Digha, Shankarpur, Tajpur and Mandarmani in the district, it is difficult for tourists to explore the entire stretch in one visit. Therefore, people come to one place and come back. “The Marine Drive will help them visit all these places for a three to four day tour and explore the beauty of the coastal areas of Purba Medinipur,” DSDA Managing Director Manas Mondal told PTI. Tourists can depart from any of the four points and cover the entire circuit, he said.

The project, which started in 2018, required an investment of Rs 173 crore, and three bridges were built at Nayakhali, Jalda on the Champa River and Soila on the Pichhaboni River on the Marine Drive road to facilitate communication.

“Due to ongoing works in Tajpur and about one kilometer of road repairs, the entire Marine Drive cannot be opened immediately. It will be done very soon,” Mandal said. The Marine Drive will reduce the distance traveled by about 10 km for any visitor if one wishes to explore several tourist destinations in this coastal belt, he said, adding that a one-kilometer-long nature trail with a butterfly park and a bird aviary at New Digha will also be on the way.

The DSDA also plans to beautify a large body of water, about 500 meters from the ancient coast of Digha and make it a nesting place for migratory birds, Mondal said.

”We saw four to five species of migratory birds coming to the lake which was formed by sea water through a stream. We are developing it in such a way that more migratory birds will come, and this place can become a tourist destination,” the official said.

The confluence where the Champa River meets the sea is also being developed as another tourist attraction and the place is next to Marine Drive, he explained.

Mondal said a 300-year-old Kali temple at Shankarpur and the under-construction Jagannath temple at Digha will also be two other highlights on the tour.

The open-air spectacle on the sea beach at Digha and the beautification and illumination of the area have already attracted visitors.

On a question, another DSDA official said that around 20-25 lakh tourists used to visit Digha from January to December in pre-Covid times. In the past two years, no more than 2-3 lakh came in 2020 and 2021 each, the official said.

With the improving COVID situation, tourists have been flocking to the coastal city in large numbers in recent months, and DSDA expects a 30 lakh attendance this year, he said.

Once the Jagannath Temple is completed and opened to devotees, annual tourist attendance is expected to top 35 lakh, the official added.

(This story has not been edited by the Devdiscourse team and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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