CULTURAL HERITAGE TOURISM - ANANALYSIS WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO WEST BENGAL, INDIA
Cultural Heritage Tourism means any form of tourism that showcases the present and past lifestyle, art, culture and heritage of the people associated with the concerned location (Hawkes & Kwortnik, 2006). Cultural Heritage Tourism in West Bengal aims to recognize the importance of the cultural heritage products for continuity of culture and the balance within cultures. It generates local employment and business both directly and indirectly in the tourism sector and in various support and resource management sectors. The tourism sector is considered as an important vehicle for socio economic development of the concerned communities. The tourism sector stimulates improvements to local transportation, communication and other basic community infrastructures of West Bengal. This state is one of the important destination states in India for cultural heritage tourism for domestic and international tourists alike. Almost all districts of this state are replete with heritage products. This paper provides a theoretical frame work for cultural heritage tourism development in West Bengal and their associated issues and concerns. The main objective of this research is to promote West Bengal as a preferred destination for visitors and provide the business of cultural heritage tourism with the desired opportunities that have every potential to improve the economy of the concerned people and thereby generate revenue for the State as well. The success of cultural heritage tourism depends on the ability of the destinations to engage in sustainable use and conservation of vital resources.
Keywords:Heritage Tourism, Cultural Tourism, Impacts, Socio-Economic Development, Challenges and Opportunities, West Bengal
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