Veli calling! Ready for adventure?

A senior department official said the main objective is to transform Veli Tourist Village into a one-day tourism destination.

Published: 06th July 2022 07:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th July 2022 07:06 AM   |  A+A-

A scene from the Veli beach, where tourists are seen enjoying horse rides

Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In an effort to promote tourism and transform Veli the popular scenic picnic spot in the heart of the capital into a major destination, the tourism department is gearing up to set up an adventure park. The department has earmarked 12 cents on the Veli Tourist Village premises for it.  The plan is to introduce a slew of components like kayaking, zipline, air cycle, rope activities and coracle boats. 

A senior department official said the main objective is to transform Veli Tourist Village into a one-day tourism destination. The department has tied up with Kerala Adventure Tourism Promotion Society (KATPS) for implementing the project. 

A couple clicks a horseback selfie on 
Veli beach

“Though it’s visited by hundreds everyday, people tend to leave after a few hours. The destination has immense potential and introducing more fun and adventure components will make the visitors stay for a day. We want people belonging to all age groups to get engaged and all these adventure components can be explored by any age group including the elderly,” said the official. 

For introducing water sports, the department has cleared a large area of the lake lying unexplored on the left of the 300-metre-long floating bridge in the village. The District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC) has taken up the cleaning activities to facilitate the adventure park project. 

“There are curated gardens, artworks and sculptures in the sprawling village and there are a lot of unused spaces inside, which we want to explore. Earlier, there used to be an adventure park in the village but it’s inactive now and we are going to revamp all defunct facilities,” said the official. 

The project is estimated to cost around Rs 50 lakh and the adventure park is expected to be ready by October. Veli Tourist Village already has many attractions, including a solar energy-powered miniature train, a floating amphitheatre, a floating restaurant, and horse ride. 

The department is planning to call a pre-bid meeting to encourage private parties to come and invest in the village. “In addition to the adventure park, we are planning to strengthen existing facilities and introduce more tourism elements. We will be holding meetings with private parties to explore more possibilities here. The constructed shops in the village would also be leased out so that the visitors get more options for recreation and refreshments,” said the official.

Coming soon: Solar boat
In an effort to boost boating activities, the tourism department will soon start operating a solar boat which is being developed by Anert (Agency for New and Renewable Energy Research and Technology). “Boating is one of the major attractions wooing visitors to Veli and we are planning to scale up boating activities. A solar boat would soon set sail at Veli. Test and trial-run of the boat will start soon in the lake,” an official said. 

Floating amphitheatre to be rented out 
In an effort to scale up cultural activities, the authorities are planning to rent out the newly constructed amphitheatre, which has a floating stage. The amphitheatre was constructed at a cost of Rs 78 lakh. “Apart from a couple of inaugural events, we couldn’t hold any programmes at the amphitheatre. We are planning to give the facility on rent so that organisations can hold cultural events in the village which would be an added attraction for the visiting tourists. Also, the events will draw more crowds,” said the official.

Beach protection
Sea advancement and rough waves have been repeatedly wreaking havoc on the Veli beach, making it more vulnerable year after year. As part of the comprehensive coastal area conservation plan, the irrigation department is drawing up a comprehensive plan for the protection of the beach. The state government has sanctioned Rs 5,300 crore for the conservation of the entire Kerala coast.  A senior official of the irrigation department told TNIE that Veli is one of the beaches listed to be taken up on a priority basis in Phase II of the conservation project. “Twenty-eight beaches have been listed in the second phase of the project. We have placed the proposal before the World Bank for getting funds for 40km of coast,” said the official. The plan is to implement the project within five years.



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