Six villages in the vicinity of Dhordo have now stepped up to provide homestay for the 111-day-long Rann Utsav. Close to 2,000 rooms will now be made available by villagers and private entrepreneurs in and around Dhordo thanks to the ‘homestay policy’ unveiled last November by the Gujarat government for the Rann Utsav which will be held from November 1, 2016 to February 20, 2017. The policy aims to attract local residents to offer bed and breakfast facility to boost tourists’ numbers that have swelled post the Khushboo Gujarat Ki campaign. As per the Rann Utsav portal, there are 125 premium AC tents, 125 semi luxury tents and 100 economy tents.
“Six villages, like Sumrasar, Hodko, Gandhi nu Gam, Bhindiyara, Gorewalli, located near Dhordo village, where the tented city has been erected for the desert festival, have put up almost 2,000 rooms for the festival. A lot of private entrepreneurs have also invested in setting up of stay facilities in and around Dhordo now. There was a demand for homestay owing to Rann Utsav and the gap was filled by villagers who have opened up rooms in their houses as homestay. Earlier, there was no policy framework which looked at homestay as a commercial activity and encompassed the entire gamut of additional services like payments for consumption of water, electricity etc which is there now under this policy,” said N Srivastava, MD and Commissioner, Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Ltd.
He added, “Under the new homestay policy, residence owners who will register for this initiative will get several