Kerala’s STREET tourism project bags global award at WTM London

Kerala’s sustainable and inclusive tourism project STREET has received a global award at the World Travel Market (WTM) London in recognition of the water conservation initiatives successfully carried out as part of the community-oriented destination development plans.

STREET—which stands for Sustainable, Tangible, Responsible, Experiential, Ethnic Tourism — is a participatory tourism development approach evolved on the basis of UNWTO’s motto ‘Tourism for Inclusive Growth’. The project is being implemented as part of the globally acclaimed Responsible Tourism initiative of the Kerala Tourism Department.

The state bagged the award for the commendable work it carried out for ‘Conserving Water and Improving Water Security and Supply for Neighbours’.

“It’s a proud moment for Kerala Tourism and its Responsible Tourism initiative…The award is for the water conservation initiative taken up under the STREET project, which is a first-of-its-kind initiative in the world. This award comes as an inspiration for Kerala Tourism to move forward with more new initiatives..,” said Tourism Minister P A Mohammad Riyas.

“…The Kerala Government will continue its focus on ensuring that local communities actively participate in tourism activities across the state, thereby ensuring more economic benefits to the community,” he added.

The project focuses on a theme-based street development approach at tourism destinations to reduce the over-concentration of activities at core centers, widen the area of interest for visitors, and maximize the local community benefit.

‘Water Street’ is one major stream of the ‘STREET’ Project, successfully implemented at Maranvanthuruthu panchayat in the Kottayam district near the world-renowned RT destination Kumarakom.

As part of the project, 18 canals, three rivers, and a backwater stretch flowing through the area have been cleaned and deepened as the combined effort of the local community, RT Mission units, and the local panchayat.

The banks of the canal were protected with coir rapping and the cultivation of flowers and herbal and vegetable plants. Once the free flow of clean water was ensured, water-related tourism activities like kayaking, rowing country boats, shikkara trips etc were taken up and the marketing of local products and live fishing activities were organized.


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