Kumbalanghi, the country’s first ever model tourism village, is preparing to meet the tourist inflow which is expected to peak during Christmas and New Year.

With cruise tourism going into off mode, the village is using the lull in tourists to gear up for the Kumbalanghi Festival. The fete, featuring ethnic food and art forms, is one of the major events in the village.

“Work has started on three paddy field stretches - Manakkoor, Thekke Manakkoor and Chudukadu pokkali fields. Mud bunds are being erected along the boundaries, which has not been done for the last 25 years. Shrimp and fish are being farmed in the fields, and this will be followed by pokkali rice farming,” said M.P. Sivadathan, president of the Kumbalanghi Model Tourism Development Society.

Canals in the area are being dredged and deepened to increase the flow of water and to avoid waterlogging. However, roadworks in the village have been held up due to rain.

The Public Works Department authorities have informed village panchayat officials and KMTDS officials that rain could hamper roadworks if they were launched before the monsoon season, like it happened at Chellanam. Roadworks are now expected to start by mid-November so that the village will be all set to welcome the guests once the tourist season begins.

Kumbalanghi is also in the process of joining hands with neighbouring panchayats of Chellanam and Kumbalam under the Sustainable Agri-Tourism Village Project. Murali Menon, who was the consultant for the Kumbalanghi project, has been asked to prepare the Detailed Project Report.

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