Assam Tourism held an interactive session in Ahmedabad, Gujarat to showcase the potential of the state as an ideal tourist destination, stated a release. “Assamese culture, the state’s wildlife, green golf courses, sprawling tea gardens and the majestic Brahmaputra make Assam truly matchless. The place has immense tourism potential both for domestic and overseas travellers. It is well connected and safe. People are warm and hospitable. We invite one and all to visit Assam,” said Ashutosh Agnihotri, IAS, Commissioner & Secretary, Tourism Department, Government of Assam.

Agnihotri said “Assam Tourism is planning to ink a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Indian Railways to start a tourist train for Assam and this will connect key destinations in the state that a tourist will want to travel to. This experience will be pocket-friendly, yet exotic.”

To tap niche tourism opportunities, Assam, which accounts for about 60 per cent of the national tea production and 80 per cent of the country’s export, will promote its tea estates for travellers to enjoy and experience the craft of tea making. Tourists will get to reside in the quintessential British era bungalows within the estates, enjoy their tea and delve into the history behind this industry. There are close to 800 major and 60,000 small tea estates spread across 300,000 hectares in Assam employing 17 per cent of the state’s workforce.

An added attraction will be the ‘tea-tees’ or golf courses in tea estates. There are approximately 20 such zones in Assam. As part of legacy of the British planters, besides clubhouses for post-golf sessions, some estates even house airstrips for tourists to arrive and take off in chartered aircraft. During 2014-15, Assam’s domestic inbound tourist flows stood at 45,00,000 while overseas tourist flow was at 25,000.