Karnataka’s Hampi records lowest tourist footfall in 10 yrs due to heatwave

HOSAPETE: With Vijayanagara district experiencing heatwaves and temperature rising up to 42 degrees Celsius, Hampi – a UNESCO World Heritage Site, recorded the lower tourist footfall in the last 10 years. As per official data, everyday only 400 to 500 tourists are visiting Hampi from the last 15 days.

To beat the summer heat, the district administration has constructed a few huts and have also taken safety measures. Business in the heritage site has also taken a beating. Many school students from various states and district who visit Hampi in March every have also not turned up due to the scorching heat.

Virupakshi V Hampi, state president of Tourists’ Guide Association said that not more than 600 tourists have visited Hampi in the last two weeks. He confirmed that this is the lowest tourist footfall recorded in Hampi in the last 10 years. Usually in summer season, around 1,500 tourists visit, but this year, there is a sharp decline in the number.

“The low turnout has made life difficult for us. Health comes first, but there are also rumours doing the rounds on social media that Hampi is closed for tourists due to heatwave. I request people not to spread such rumours. The district administration has taken all safety measures like drinking water, tourist huts and even availability of medical staff in Hampi,” he added.

Senior officials of Vijayanagara district administration said Hampi and its surrounding hills always witness high temperature. It’s a natural phenomenon. However, the administration is also taking measures like sprinkling water on tourists using small tractors. Mornings and evenings are the best time to enjoy the beauty of Hampi, they said.

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