Hyderabad: The current year saw a boost in eco-tourism in Bhupalpally district. Thanks to the efforts of Telangana forest department. The department now plans to introduce on the itinerary Gaddalasari waterfall — said to be the third-highest waterfall in the country — as a major tourism spot. Plans are afoot to develop several amenities for visitors at the water fall located near Veerabhadravaram village in Bhupalpally.
The eco-tourism activities launched in Bhupalpally district in September focused on four locations found suitable for rock climbing, trekking, celebration of Laknavaram festival and setting up of Tadvai Huts and such others. District eco-tourism coordinator Suman Kalyanapu said, “We received over 2,000 visitors since the inauguration. Now we have also launched a website for online booking and registration. A specially-designed weekend retreat package for working professionals in Hyderabad were a hit. Visitors can come on Saturday morning and leave on Sunday night. The cost of package starting at Rs 1,200 varies according to activities visitors choose.”
Tadvai Huts has been a star attraction said officials. Development coordinator of eco-tourism project Siddarth Make said, “We have six Tadvai Huts currently that look like a hut from outside but the insides are furnished with 3-star amenities, including air-conditioning etc. We charge Rs 1,000 for a day’s stay.”
Bhupalpally district was chosen for the project owing to its 75 per cent forest cover. DFO Ravi Kiran said, “The forest department will work on identifying more tourist spots. It offers so much to the visitors besides contributing to eco-tourism. Visitors can see ancient rock art paintings and visit other places such as prehistoric burial sites, waterfalls etc. for much lower than a foreign trip.”
In October, a new tourist spot was opened at Amarabad Tiger Reserve called ‘Octopus Viewpoint’, located five km from Domalpenta. It offers a view of River Krishna and the adjoining forests. This tourist spot is 42 km from Mannanur on the Hyderabad-Srisailam highway. Field director of Amrabad Tiger Reserve, Mohan Chandra Paragein, said, “We are building a watch tower and a forest trail for visitors to have closer and first-hand experience of the forest.” Senior forest officials said the visitors’ response will help develop more eco-tourist spots. “We are keen to see more tourists to explore all the beautiful places there are in Telangana,” said Ravi Kiran.