Officials of the Tourism Department are working on a master plan to develop 373 beaches across the 12 districts located along the coastline of Andhra Pradesh.
The Tourism Department intends to leverage on the 975-km-long coastline, the third longest in the country after Gujarat and Tamil Nadu, to attract tourists from across and outside the country.
Locations to develop these beaches have been identified in the districts of Srikakulam (69), Vizianagaram (14), Visakhapatnam (32), Anakapalli (35), Kakinada (22), Konaseema (20), West Godavari (10), Krishna (26), Bapatla (33), Prakasam (23), Nellore (63) and Tirupati (26).
A draft tourism plan has been prepared in adherence to the new Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) as per the 2019 Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification released by the Union Ministry of Forest, Environment and Climate Change, which will be incorporated in the AP CZMP.
To ensure that the tourism plans are compatible with the stipulated norms, the tourism wing has aligned with the Fisheries Department and researchers from the Andhra Pradesh Fisheries University to conduct a survey and identify suitable locations for beaches along the coastline.
After completing the joint task by the Fisheries University and the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Authority (APTA), a report will be forwarded to the respective district Collectors and members of the District Tourism Councils for finalising the plan and incorporating it in the AP CZMP.
The District Tourism Councils are collective bodies representing members of the Lok Sabha, Legislative Assembly and Council, Zilla Parishad Chairpersons, Panchayat and Municipal Corporations, Commissioners of urban local bodies, Deputy Conservators of Forest, District Health Officers, engineers from the Pollution Control Board, members of Tours and Travels’ Associations and hotel associations, among others.
To expedite the process, the government has instructed the district Collectors to engage in consultations with the stakeholders and finalise reports for development of beaches in their respective districts.
“We are trying to fast-track the plan as it will help promote growth in the entire coastal area and attract tourists,” said Managing Director of Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC) and CEO of APTA K. Kanna Babu.
After identification of potential tourist spots along the coastline, the government plans to engage private developers to design and develop beaches with resorts and recreational facilities.
Besides, the Tourism Department is also focused on a few eco-tourism and ropeway projects that are picking up the pace.