Wanderlust on display at the 11th Anandabazar Tourist Spot
Singapore, Malyasia, Egypt, Spain, Greece — Calcuttans were looking for popular foreign destinations on the last day of three-day 11th Anandabazar Patrika Tourist Spot at Netaji Indoor Stadium.
The visitors, busy planning their Puja vacation, trooped into the stalls of international tour operators on Sunday to make enquiries about popular destinations.
A middle-aged schoolteacher couple — Sudipto and Shampa Majumdar — asked an operator whether any slots were available for a visit to Sinagpore during the Puja vacation. They want to spend Diwali there.
Septuagenarian Debasish Sengupta collected brochures from the kiosk after asking about the right time to visit the island nation in Southeast Asia.
For Sengupta, a resident of Uttarpara in Hooghly, the expansive Changi airport was the reason why he wanted to visit Singapore.
“What is not there at Changi airport? Shopping facilities, restaurants, all latest brands are available. A tour across the iconic airport itself is an attraction,” Sengupta said.
“Travel has become affordable. The cleaner air, the hotels, Sentosa Island, Universal Studio — Singapore has everything,” said Sudipto Majumder, an art teacher at DPS Ruby Park.
A representative of travel agency Cox & Kings said there was a significant surge in queries for the Singapore- Malyasia and Singapore-Bali circuits.
A large number of visitors also expressed keenness to visit Spain, Greece, Italy and other European countries.
A representative of MakeMyTrip, an online travel company said, said the Bengalis’ love for football had prompted them to include a tour to Camp Nou —the home stadium of FC Barcelona — in their package.
“Spain is anyway rich in diversity. The visit to Camp Nou has added to the flavour,” the representative said.
“I am from Calcutta and so football always attracts me. Who would want to miss a chance to visit Camp Nou?” said Saptarshi Chaudhuri.
Egypt is on the mind of Chitraboli Bhowal because of its history and the pyramids. “You always prefer to go to a country that is so widely read in history books,” said Bhowal while browsing brochures at the stall of SOTC, a travel services company.
Among the domestic participants, Madhya Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation received many queries about jungles, said Abhijit Dhar, a senior official of the corporation.
The corporation has split the tourist destinations into four categories — wildlife spots, pilgrimage, heritage and leisure.
The organisers said around 17,000 people had visited the fair since Friday.