THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Pilgrim tourism in the state continues to take a beating as the arrival of domestic tourists to the Guruvayur Sree Krishna Temple and the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple in Thiruvananthapuram has reduced further.
As per Tourism Department statistics, Thrissur and Thiruvananthapuram saw a drop of 4.5% and 1.84%, respectively, in the arrival of domestic tourists in the first quarter of 2019 despite an 8.07% increase in their footfall across the state.
This downward spiral, said Tourism Department officers, was due to the drop in pilgrims’ arrival to the two temples.
While the arrival of domestic tourists had been on the decline in Guruvayur, this is perhaps the first time in recent years the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, the richest temple in the country, also witnessed a drop.
The negative growth assumes significance considering the fact the Centre and the state government have been taking concerted efforts to develop spiritual tourism circuits across Kerala of late.
The Centre even granted around `300 crore for various initiatives in the state, including for projects in the two temples, over the last few years.