Nainital / Mussoorie: After being banned for five and a half months, the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR) has reopened for overnight stays, with reservations selling out in just 48 hours. This comes even as the hill towns of Mussoorie and Nainital have seen a large influx of tourists for the long weekend in Dussehra.
Corbett manager Rahul (who only uses his first name) said stays inside the reserve were closed to tourists in May, but the areas of Bijrani, Jhirna and Dhela have reopened to tourists. “We were inundated with requests in the hours after the reopening and due to the long weekend all the accommodations inside the reserve are full until Tuesday,” he said.
According to the Corbett administration, 80 reservations were received in just 48 hours after reopening on Wednesday. While day safaris were already permitted in other areas, the administration has now allowed tourists to visit the Bijrani area, which is popular for tiger watching.
And it’s not just accommodation inside the reserve that is full, the resorts and hotels on its outskirts have also registered full occupancy for the weekend.
Hari Mann, president of the Ramnagar Hotels Association, told TOI that almost all hotels are full. “This weekend we are full and tourists have also called and asked for information on the next few days. Even requests for wedding venues have increased, ”Mann said.
The Dussehra long weekend also drew hordes of tourists to Nainital. Officials said traffic to Nainital had to be stopped at Rusi Bypass on the Haldwani Expressway and at Narayan Nagar on Kaladhungi Road. Tourists were advised to take shuttles from these places to Lake Town.
Mussoorie hoteliers also reported 90-100% occupancy for the Dussehra weekend. Traffic jams were recorded in the city near Gandhi Chowk, Picture Palace and Mall Road.
“The tourist influx is particularly good this weekend in Mussoorie as well as in other destinations in Uttarakhand. Mussoorie hotels reported around 80-85% occupancy for the weekend, while most hotels in popular tourist destinations in the state report similar numbers. Although it is impossible to recover from the losses so soon, the recovery in tourism is good news for everyone, ”said Sandeep Sahni, president of the Uttarakhand Hotels Association.


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