Goa changes gear from beach bumming to river rafting

Panaji, June 29 (IANS) At a time when fun on the beach becomes almost extinct with the monsoon making the sea at Goa choppy and dangerous, the state tourism department is keen on selling a white water rafting package to tourists.

The 90-minute rafting expedition begins at Ustem village and ends at Sonal village in Sattari Taluka, about 35 km from here, said Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) Chairman Nilesh Cabral.

“All Goans and tourists should participate and experience this wonderful water sport. We invite you to take half-a-day out from the beaches and go on a journey down the Mhadei river and witness the pristine beauty of the Western Ghats,” Cabral said.

The Mhadei is also known as the Mandovi along the coastal fringe and is one of the main rivers in the state.

Cabral said the river rafting activities are carried out in accordance with the internationally accepted norms.

After banking for years on Goa’s prowess as a beach tourism destination and a failed attempt to promote tourism in the hinterland, the state tourism department is now banking on hang-gliding, white water rafting and hot air ballooning to attract tourists.

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