Srinagar: More than 2.4 lakh tourists have visited Kashmir this year so far with August recording the maximum footfall.
Official data reveal that 2,41,035 tourists visited the valley till August. They include 796 foreigners.
Figures suggest that nearly 50,000 tourists visited the valley in August. Most of the tourists who visited Kashmir hailed from Maharashtra, West Bengal, and Tamil Nadu.
In July, 48,858 tourists visited the valley against 16000 in June when the Covid number had started dipping in Jammu and Kashmir.
After witnessing a bumper winter season, tourists arrivals came to naught when the second wave of COVID-19 hit the country in April this year. Later a lockdown was imposed by the authorities to prevent the spread of infections.
Last year, a total of 4.8 lakh tourists visited Kashmir despite lockdown and surge in COVID-19 cases.
Tourism players hope for record-breaking arrivals in autumn and winter.
“We expect good footfalls during autumn and winter too. Last year we witnessed 100 percent occupancy in winter,” said President Travel Agents Association of Kashmir Farooq Ahmad Kuthoo.
The tourism department has planned an aggressive promotional blitzkrieg to sell Kashmir as a niche tourist destination and increase footfalls in autumn and winter.
The programmes will take off in October and continue till March. From organizing festivals to promoting new destinations, the department has chalked out strategies to promote tourism on a bigger scale.