Tourism Valuation In Andaman And Nicobar Islands

A pre & post tsunami analysis:

The Andaman & Nicobar Islands of India are the paragon of beauty and present a landscape with scenic and picturesque extravaganza. The tsunami of December, 2004 completely dislocated the life-style of the islanders and the tourism sector suffered a huge blow. Due to untiring efforts of local administration, the tourism sector not only regained its lost ground after four years of tsunami; the islands registered a higher tourism value in terms of more numbers of domestic and foreign tourists as well as number of tourist spots visited in interior areas. Travel cost methodology (TCM) has been used for discussing the tourism value of the islands from domestic tourists’ view point before and after December, 2004 tsunami.

Introduction:

The Andaman & Nicobar Islands of India were shrouded in mystery for years together because of their remoteness and inaccessibility. These islands, rightly called as emerald necklace of India, lie along an arc in long and narrow broken chain of about 800 kms in North-South direction covering a geographical area of about 8250 sq. kms in the Bay of Bengal. These islands are a veritable paradise for ecologically-friendly holidaymakers with about 86 % of forest cover, coral reef varieties, unpolluted waters and wealth of marine bio diversity. Sandy beaches of the islands are known for turtle nesting, important species being Leatherback, Olive Ridley and Hawksbill. The dense masses of mangroves lining the shorelines speak about magnanimous heart of the nature while forming these islands. The archipelago is divided into two groups- the Andaman Islands in the north and the Nicobar Islands in the south. The two are separated by what is called the Ten Degree Channel. It is a misnomer because the channel is 145 kms wide and looks like a sea (2007). The islands are divided into three administrative districts: South Andaman, North & Middle Andaman and Nicobar with Port Blair as the capital city. The total population of these districts is about 0.35 millions (excluding aborigines) including 0.10 millions population of Port Blair city.

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