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Chapter One Introduction

1.1 Introduction As modern life gets faster, and the population of the world becomes both more urbanised and cash rich but time poor, it becomes evident that other considerations are lacking, such as spirituality and a sense of community (Mintel, 2007). The classic expression of this spiritual understanding of leisure is stated by Pieper (1952, pp. 40) a mental and spiritual attitude...a condition of the soul...a receptive attitude of mind, a contemplative attitude.

Spiritual tourism is a term used to describe holidays that address mind, body and spirit and create a feeling of wellbeing. Spiritual tourism products are wide-ranging, from yoga, Pilates or meditation retreats, life coaching and detox, to spas offering alternative therapies, new age festivals or camps and sacred spiritual journeys. Spiritual tourism encompasses wellness tourism, religious tourism, spa and cultural tourism, and provision for this sector varies from ad hoc offerings in developing countries such as India, Thailand and Sri Lanka, to top-end holidays with renowned teachers in five-star hotels worldwide (Mintel, 2007).

Over the past decades, many developing countries have turned to tourism as an option for sustainable development (Singh, 2009). As a development option for developing countries, tourism can be viewed as a panacea, increasing viability of marginalised

areas, stimulating social regeneration and improving the living condition of the emerging countries. Alongside a shift in the recent tourism trend from mass tourism to more individualistic and niche patterns for the consumers who are in search of new authentic experience in areas of unspoilt natural beauty and cultural riches. Potential for developing more individually and naturally base forms of tourism is greater in developing countries as they often possess the natural recourses to accommodate such a growing demand (Mintel, 2007).

As the consumer faces complexity of choice and markets become more fragmented and individualistic, so identity of such individually and naturally base form of tourism will still be derived from the families, local and national values but also from lifestyle choices, specific brand affiliations and niche interests (Yeoman et, al,. 2005).

The researcher starts the study with a rationale explaining the reasons for undertaking this particular area. It is followed by the aim and objectives to be achieved. A review of literature on spiritual tourism is presented in Chapter four. The methods used for this study is discussed in Chapter three. The researcher then uses the literature review as a framework to carry out a destination audit on the targeted destination to investigate the current level of application of spiritual tourism. Finally, the research concludes with a discussion of marketing and organisational aspects, how the targeted destination may influence the planning and operation of spiritual tourism to achieve sustainability.

1.2 Rationale Spiritual tourism, travelling for religious purposes is not a new phenomenon. Spiritually motivated religious travel is usually considered the oldest form of non economic travel (Jackowski and Smith, 1992). Jackowski (2000, cited in Timothy and Olsen, 2006) estimates that approximately 240 million people a year go on pilgrimages, the majority being Christians, Muslims and Hindus. Spiritually motivated travel has become

widespread and popularised in recent decades, occupying an important segment of international tourism, having grown substantially in recent years both in proportional and absolute terms. As such, steady increase in this market segment seems to be a foreseeable trend in the future (Timothy and Olsen, 2006).

Tourism can arguably contribute to many of the various dimensions of spirituality, although obviously it is debatable as to how far a transitory phenomenon can make a significant difference to the long-term sustainable tourism. Equally, tourists need to be in good enough physical health to embark on a journey, as well as being materially affluent (a state rarely encouraged by many spiritual gurus). As with all forms of tourism, the flows of people are predominantly from more developed to less developed countries. The recent trend, however, is for Western tourists to seek solace in Eastern philosophies and therapies (e.g., Chinese medicine, Buddhist meditation, Indian Ayurveda, Thai massage). Such alternatives already pervade many Western societies, but tourists are often just as keen to visit the origin of the practice (Smith and Kelly, 2006b).

Focusing on tourism in India, a destination that, since the 1960s has come to epitomise the spiritual touristic experience (Mehta, 1990; Brown, 1998; Sutcliffe, 1998). India considers the outcomes of an exploratory study into the motivations of Western visitors to a specific religious site, the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in the southeast of the country. In so doing, it challenges some of the assumptions regarding the spiritual nature of the modern tourist experience, while highlighting the need for greater knowledge and understanding of the subject (Sharpley and Sundram, 2005).

The researcher had collected knowledge about tourism dynamics, its motivations and its trends during university study. What the researcher came to know during university study is that there are many different motives behind different types of tourism. And that tourism trends also changes with time. According to the research undertaken by Mintel reports, in 2009 as stress magnifies in response to the global recession, holistic tourism is bucking the travel trend. Its growth is driven by changing priorities in a changing world as people strive to keep fit and healthy and to look after mind, body and spirit (Mintel, 2009).

According to Jones (2009) five years ago, the word holistic was associated with hippies and not the typical tourism (not for me). But holistic holidays are now more seen as spiritual holidays, in other words meaning holidays including activities such as yoga. Ideas and treatments considered alternative or New Age a decade ago are now becoming as mainstreams within tourism destination portfolio (Mintel, 2007).

To answer the questions above, together with the researchers personal interest and ambition to explore new destinations, particular research a desire to pursue this has emerged. As travelling for wellness becomes an increasingly sought-after visitor experience, tourism destinations have begun to strategically incorporate the concept amongst their product to offer, observes Lehto et, al., (2006). One country where spiritual tourism can be seen potential development at both domestic and international level is India.

1.3 Aim To examine the potential of developing spiritual tourism in India with particular focus on the state Gujarat in order to achieve sustainable tourism development

1.4 Objectives 1. To define the concept and key terms of spiritual tourism 2. To evaluate current situation of spiritual tourism in India: Gujarat 3. To examine India: Gujarat through an internal and external audit. 4. To assess Gujarats potential to achieve sustainable spiritual tourism.

Chapter Two Methodology

This chapter looks at the research method used within the project. Rudestam and Newtown (2001, p.75) explains that

the goal of this chapter is to provide a clear and complete description of the specific steps to be followed.

In this is methodology chapter whereby the researcher intends to highlight, discuss and evaluate the methods used in data collection and evaluation for this study. The researcher selected methods suitable for the study and also those which suited the time available to accomplish this study. As the researcher has decided to concentrate on solely secondary research for this project, the methodology shall include reasoning and justification of the choice of research design, the construction of the method and also the sample of literature to be used. This will confirm that a thorough investigation into the topic has taken place.

2.1 Choice of the research design Research is defined by Saunders et al. (2003, p.488) as the systematic collection and interpretation of information with a clear purpose. In this case the purpose of collecting and interpreting information must be carried out in order for the researcher to achieve the established aim. Secondary research was chosen to be the most suitable method for this project as researcher has an aim to examine potential of developing spiritual

tourism in India. To achieve this aim it was essential to define terms of spiritual tourism and current situation of spiritual tourism.

In addition more Cottrell (2005) refers that many reputable sources are now available online. Nowadays, secondary research via the internet may provide higher quality data than an attempt to do primary research. For the secondary research, a broad review of the literature was carried out to gain general knowledge of the topic mainly from text books and journals articles. They are generally considered to be reliable as Saunders et al. (2003, p.52) advocates that,

They are evaluated by academic peers prior to publications to assess their quality and suitability.

Cottrell (2005, p.129) also explains that

Articles in journals are usually regarded as the most reputable sources as in order to be published they have to be reviewed as selected by other academics. This is known as reviewed by peers.

In order to be ensured that all of the necessary theories, models and information relevant to the study were gathered, in addition to the journal articles on some occasion organisational research reports like Mintel and country based Tourism Ministry annual

reports were used. For this research, secondary data enhanced the researchers understanding of spiritual tourism and its concept and the sources are discussed in the literature review presented in Chapter three.

Secondary analysis is the re-analysis of data for the purpose of answering the original research question with better statistical techniques, or answering new questions with old data Saunders et al. (2003). Secondary analysis is an important feature of the research and evaluation enterprise. For secondary data the researcher aimed to finding out other studies related to the topic area through sources such as journals, books and any other documents which will allow the researcher to gather relevant data for this study. Stewart and Kamis (1993) argued that using secondary sources of data has an advantages for example it is less expensive compared to primary sources of data. Additionally, the authors emphasise that it helps the researcher to make a comparative analysis between the new data and the previous data whereby differences can be examined.

2.1.1 Construction of method When constructing and carrying out secondary research it does not just mean to simply read previous literatures, as Rudestam and Newtown (2001, p.60) explains that

you need to maintain a critical perspective, evaluating the study on its own merits and in comparison with other studies on the same or similar problem.

This is where critical evaluation as a part of the research process can assist in the assessment of secondary sources. According to Cottrell (2005) Critical thinking is a complex process of deliberation which involves a wide range of skills and attitudes. Some people are naturally sceptical whereas others find it easy to trust. However in critical thinking it is not about a persons natural trait, it is about the methodology employed to explore evidences. The work is carried out by using form and the functions of theory, the constitutions of an argument and forms of evidence. Therefore an assessment schematic has been designed which can be found in Table 1. All of the literatures were compared against those points to demonstrate if the studies are reliable, valid and appropriate to use.

Table1: Assessment Schematic Criteria to appraise work of other Explanations of criteria.

1. If the writer's stance on the issues is To make position clear writer should clear? answer to their question. Writer should be agreeing to their either point of view. Writers should know what to believe or not. 2. Are reasons clear to support writers Writers should provide reasons to support stance? their argument. They may be either independent or joint reasons and logically consistent. 3. Is the writer's conclusion clear and Conclusion should sum up argument in a based on the evidence? logical order. It should include one or more judgements, drawn from an analysis of the evidences given. 4. Are reasons presented in a logical Writers should not lose track of their own order, as a line of reasoning? arguments and draw a conclusion that does not follow evidences given 5. Is the argument well structured and The writing should not stray back or essay to follow? forward between points. The argument should group similar points and details together.


6. Are reasons clearly linked to one One reason should relate to another, another and to the conclusion? writer should make good use of

summaries to sum up argument. 7. Does the writer provide a list of Any written piece of work must be references at the end of the essay? accompanied with a list of reference. This helps readers to follow up. A list of reference should be mixed bunch of qualitative & quantitative reference. 8. Has the writer successfully removed Writing should not contain non essential any non-essential descriptive writing? material. Writer should not be too descriptive and repetitive.






any If a writer argues to be least important for a reason, it should follow in whole piece of work. A writer should maintain their consistency of the logic.


10. Are the writer's beliefs or self-interest A writer should have strong beliefs, but unfairly distorting the argument? an argument should be firmly based on reasoning. Adapted from Cottrell (2005)


The assessment schematic mentioned in Table 1 mainly grouped into three main areas. The first area to be assessed will be to identify what is the major problem or issue to ne investigated is. This shall identify the concept of the authors work and will allow similar studies to be directly compared.

The next area to be evaluated is, are there hypotheses?. A hypotheses is defined by Saunders et al. (2003, p.479) as a testable propositions about the relationship between two or more events or concepts. By enquiring whether or not a hypotheses has been stated by the author it may indicate whether a narrow or broad theoretical fame work has been applied.

Another section that may influence results and findings is the population of the study; consequently whether or not the population is appropriate for the study. Moreover or not limitations for the study are noted and shall be included in the assessment schematic. An author who identifies the limitations of their study may indicate whether a thoroughly researched piece of work has been produced or not and realises where it may be improved upon.


2.1.2 Qualitative Vs Quantitative Ghauri and Grnhaug (2002) argued that a qualitative method of data collection is more subjective in understanding matters while a quantitative approach is more objective. Additionally, the authors emphasise that a quantitative approach is mostly used to gather data in a large sample while qualitative can be used in a small sample whereby an in- depth analysis of the study can be obtained through interview, observation, focus group and other instruments like a review of the literatures.

On the other hand some of the researchers argued that both quantitative and qualitative can be used in the data collection because it increases the value and justification of the research. Qualitative data will enable the researcher to gather data which focus on participants attitudes and perceptions whilst quantitative data collection can be used to measure its frequencies (Cooper and Schindler, 2008). Therefore this research is a qualitative research because in a qualitative approach a fewer number of objects are studied. The purpose is to gain deeper knowledge of the targeted subject area.


Table 2: Distinctions between quantitative and qualitative data. Quantitative Based on meaning derived from numbers Collection results in numerical and standardised data. Analysis conducted through the use of diagrams and statistics Source: Saunders et al. (2007, p. 482) Qualitative Based on meanings Collection results in requiring classification Analysis conducted through the use of conceptualisation.

2.1.3 Inductive Vs deductive research. Conclusions can be drawn through either inductive or deductive research. These two approaches represent two different philosophies. The inductive way to draw conclusion is founded on empirical data. The researcher establishes theories and models that are based on different phenomena in reality. If the researcher on the other hand has a deductive approach, then the researcher uses existing theories, and investigates these empirically with different methods. Existing theories are the base for deciding what information should be selected, how it should be understood and finally how to relate the results to the theory. In practice however, a number of analytical procedures combine inductive and deductive approaches to analyse qualitative data (Saunders et al. 2007)


Figure 1: Inductive Vs Deductive

Inductive Source: Social research methods (2009)


There are a number of good reasons for adopting an inductive approach to a research project. Firstly, a commencement of an exploratory project seeking to generate a direction for further work. Secondly, the scope of research may be constrained by adopting restrictive theoretical propositions that do not reflect participants views and experiences. And lastly, the theory may be used to suggest subsequent, appropriate action to be taken because it is specifically derived from the events and circumstances of the setting in which the research was conducted (Saunders et al. 2007)


2.2 Sample The sample of secondary literature used within the research is important as Wisker (2001, p.138) puts forward they are chosen to indicate the larger whole of which they are but a small part. Also Marshall (1997) indicates that it is often unfeasible to study all the things which have the qualities we are interested in.

All work researched regarding the topic was of use when researching the different themes and theories. More recent up to date studies seem to have greater information relating to scientific testing as a result of improvement in technology. However, the importance of long-standing studies cannot be underestimated as these provided vital data in which current studies have been based upon.

2.2.1 Inclusion criteria for literature When researching online journal articles, keyword searches were used to locate secondary literature. These keyword searches consisted of words including spirituality; spiritual tourism; tourism motivation; tourism India; tourism Gujarat; and tourism trends; which gave a base of relevant articles to work from. For which Google scholar and university Athens database were used. The journals gathered then allowed

snowball sampling to commence, which Saunders et al. (2003, p.176) explains as cases which:


identify further members of the population, who then identify further members, and so the sample snowballs.

The snowball sampling of secondary literature was carried out by using the authors list of references to highlight other articles that might be of relevance.


Chapter Three Literature review

An extensive literature review is essential in order to define the concept and key terms of spiritual tourism. In order to understand spiritual tourism in more detail, the characteristics of the spiritual activities which could be considered as contributing towards tourism will be discussed. The review also introduces definitions of spiritual tourism provided by various authors and aims to assess the current situation of spiritual tourism development. The researcher will analyse the literature to help build a theoretical frame work on the definition and concept of spiritual tourism. Hence a definition of spiritual tourism is discussed, followed by characteristics of spiritual tourism and finally a justification of spiritual tourism as a form of authentic and sustainable tourism will be presented.

Cottrell (2005, p. 127) states that when looking for evidences to support an argument one needs to consider whether anything has been written about it already, where the information could be found and which are the most relevant and authoritative sources for the subject.

Spiritual tourism is a tourism that is motivated by faith or religious reasons has been in evidence for centuries (Sharply and Sundram, 2005). In more recent times, however, it has been suggested that modern tourism has become the functional and symbolic equivalent of more traditional spiritual practices, such as festivals, pilgrimages, yoga and holy places. To date, however, little work has been undertaken to explore this


position (Sharpley and Sundram 2005). The purpose of this literature review, therefore, is to contribute to this debate.

3.1 Spiritual tourism It has long been recognised that a variable relationship exists between the institutions of spirituality and tourism. Research proves that conceptual discussions of leisure or tourism often have spiritual overtones or link leisure with spirituality (Doohan, 1990; Godbey, 1989; McDowell, 1986). The authors above shows that spiritual tourism has been researched for many years, however peoples awareness of spiritual tourism is still an area to study. Conceptual discussions of leisure and tourism have made references to spirituality however there is a rarity of theoretical reflection and empirical study on how these two concepts may be related (Heintzman, 2002).

On the one hand, spiritual tourism may be identified as a specific type of tourism whose participants are motivated either in part or exclusively for peace reasons (Rinschede, 1992). On the other hand, tourism may be considered as a spiritual activity. (Vukonic, 1996). Smith (1992) refers to it as the mission in guest. Therefore at one extreme it is prescribed as sacred pilgrimage, a journey driven by faith, religion and spiritual fulfilment; at the other extreme it is prescribed as a tourist who may seek to satisfy some personal or spiritual need through tourism. Between these two points can be found different forms and intensities of spiritual tourism can be found which are motivated to a greater or lesser extent by religious or, conversely, cultural or knowledge-based needs. As Smith (1992) puts it, some religious tourists may be more pilgrim than tourist


whereas others may be more tourist than pilgrim. Brown (1998, p. 1) defines spirituality as

has become a kind of buzz-word of the age . . . an all-purpose word, but one that describes what is felt to be missing rather than specifying what is hoped to be found . . . The spiritual search . . . has become a dominant feature of late twentieth-century life: a symptom of collective uncertainty.

Vukonic (1996) explains that it is an opportunity for human beings to recognise and encourage their spiritual needs, but also tourism, as a particular use of such free time has come to be seen as a spiritual journey.

Smith and Kelly (2006a) define spiritual tourism as one that provides the visitor with activities and/or treatments aimed at developing, maintaining and improving the body, mind and spirit. Ali-Knight (cited in Mintel, 2009) defines spiritual tourism similarly as involving travelling to a destination to engage in the practice of yoga and related activities that enhance physical, mental or spiritual well-being. However their research is taken a step further exploring spiritual tourism in the context of expanded definitions of cultural tourism, as it embodies and incorporates many of its wider elements and involves a learning experience. It was noticed that the most notable difference between cultural tourists and yoga tourists is the greater maturity of the yoga tourist, perhaps because of the spiritual and self-reflective part of the holiday experience, which may not


be as accessible or appealing to a younger age group (Mintel, 2009).

New age spirituality is now a religion in the formal and organisational and could almost be argued market able sense. Instead it represents a personal spiritual quest that typically eschews traditional monotheistic which concentrate on what is not associated to closely with traditional theologies and churches (Hanegraaff, 1999).

3.2 Journeys can be regarded as spiritual

When contemplating spiritual tourism, there is an inclination to include classification just to those journeys that correspond to one's personal understanding of spirituality. These can be subsumed under the following heading: Table 3: Spiritual tourism characteristics YogaA 5,000-year-old spiritual discipline, which originated in the South of India, yoga is by far the most popular holistic pursuit, and the one to have most fully entered the mainstream, aided by a celebrity following. Yoga has proved to be helpful in the treatment of lifestyle conditions, including stress, obesity, diabetes and depression, and is practised as part of Ayurveda. Of the variety of styles, hatha yoga and ashtanga (power) are most common (Mintel, 2007). Ayurveda Science of life in Sanskrit is a complete medical system with its origins in northern India 5,000 years ago. By diagnosing and balancing the bodys humours, it is effective in treating a variety of conditions


including lifestyle diseases. However, it is most commonly chosen as a detox and rejuvenation therapy. Yoga is a constituent of Ayurvedic therapy. Barberry Reef, which opened 25 years ago off the west coast of Sri Lanka, pioneered the offering of Ayurveda to westerners (Mintel, 2007). Meditation Although only 6 percent of the world population are Buddhists, most of whom live in Asia, Buddhism is a rapidly growing religion in the West and an interest in Buddhist meditation has increased in the last decade. The number of Buddhist organisations in Australia, for example, increased by 211 or 126 percent in almost seven years from June 1995 to April 2004. In the UK, in the 2001 Census, 15,000 people or 1 in 400 declared themselves as Buddhist (Mintel, 2007). Cultural activities Visiting sites of history, Archaeological digs, cities up to battlefields, the interest in an epoch or specific historical events having prominence. Visiting places where historical figures or famous personalities lived and worked. Visiting places of religious significance (pilgrimages), reflection, meditation for the sake of soul-searching. This involves the cultivating and practicing of religious beliefs or the performing of religious duties (Melchers, 2006). Religious activities Religious travel is not a new phenomenon. Religion has been an integral motive for undertaking journeys and is usually considered oldest form of non economic travel (Jackowski & Smith, 1992). Every year millions of people travel to major pilgrimage destinations around the world both ancient and modern origin (Timothy & Olsen, 2006). There is small but important literature that focuses on the characteristics and travel pattern


of religiously motivated tourists. Rinschede (1992) differentiates between different forms of religious tourism based on time involved and distance travelled namely short and long term religious tourism. The short term type involves travel nearby religious attractions, while long term means travelling the world. However the motive for such travel is a journey towards the perfection (Timothy & Olsen, 2006). Adapted from Melchers (2006)

Melchers (2006) further argues that Spiritual tourism isn't just religious tourism like pilgrimages. A wide spectrum of travel forms deserves this name. Given the current inflation of meaning, spiritual tourists seek something that is worth being interested in, that can give their lives new richness or even a new direction. They want to visit meaning and investigate on the spot whether they experience anything sustainable here. In order for such expectations to be fulfilled, appropriate destinations are subject to special demands on the marketing and organization of the visit. Journeys concerned in a wider sense with experiencing culture, art and religion are understood as spiritual although the travellers seldom use the term spiritual tourism. They themselves speak of educational trips; hobby trips; meditative journeys and art trips.

Spiritual tourism is also viewed from different aspects. However the concept of spiritual tourism has been viewed from a very narrow perspective. To summarise the above arguments about spiritual tourism it can be reduced to simply meaning linking peace of


mind with leisure for an annual holiday. According to Indian union tourism minister Renuka Chaudhri (cited in Gaur, 2006 p. 43)

The concept of spiritual tourism has been viewed in a very narrow sense. People think that it is all about visiting temples and all other holy sites. We are looking at it from a wider perspective now.

She explains spiritual tourism as visiting a temple; visiting cultural sites; practicing yoga or just simply relaxing in your hotel room and listening to the Vedic chants. People across the world are showing interest in yoga. It can provide healing touch particularly to the busy urban people living in the concrete jungles. This is practiced in India is a land of spirituality.

3.3 Motives for spiritual travel Spiritual holidays seek to address the interdependence of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual, often referred to as mind, body and spirit. Inextricably connected, dynamic balances of all three are seen as essential for wellbeing. Spiritual tourism is a more abstract, multi-faith and eclectic one in which tourists seek meaning, engagement and peace through activities such as meditation. Eco- and sustainable tourism are also tied closely to holistic tourism. (Mintel, 2009).


Chaline (2002) states spiritual tourism as an extraordinary experience. What is anticipated in spiritual tourism destination is not holiness or divine visions. It is however something even more miraculous the opportunity to feel different from the way we feel at home. It is as if the act of travelling to a certain place in the world entitles us to feel happier and more alive.

Spiritual tourism is a journey, not a destination. One of the key themes to understand on spiritual tourism is that the journey towards wellness is far more important than the destination in spiritual tourism and often an alternative space in which one can engage in self analysis without the stresses and distractions of home (Wright state university, 2003).

According to Brass (2006), authenticity is linked to goodness, and exploring ones inner potential is another aspect of that authentic-seeking of searching for a non-material, authentic and deeper experience. An increasing number of people are undertaking activities which incorporate creating something new.

The spiritual traveller wants to establish or document intimate closeness and attachment to and with the subject of their journey. Purpose and destination of the journey are experienced as something special at least compared to trivial vacations and the usual places that are visited without any particular ambitions. To come close to


something, it is still best to make our way to the spot. A place is visited that has been consecrated and so is suitable for soul-searching. There is a desire to become intimate with a piece of history, the Art of the Renaissance, Saint Francis or the current musical culture. Such a trip shows others that you are already close to such themes (Melchers, 2006).

3.4 Spiritual tourism as a form of sustainable tourism Carey (2006) of Tourism Concern notes that sustainable tourism will be a core driver in the future as destinations shape their image. Carey states that, when sustainably developed, tourism can create so many social and economic opportunities for the destination community.

Sustainability and authenticity go hand in hand where communities build a tourism product which belongs to their community, for example, the Kawaza Village tourism project in central Zambia where tourists can stay in an authentic African village, teaches them about environmental issues by collecting wild honey, and finding out about apiculturists for example (Schlesinger, 2006).

Tourism can be a powerful tool of development, but its potential can also be wasted. Too often tourism enterprises see each other only as competitors, and end up frustrating visitors. Every destination talks about quality and exceeding visitors expectations, but what is the spark that transforms a destination into something remarkable? It is a

destination that has pride and is passionate about celebrating its heritage, its food, landscapes and its people. Of course, authenticity does not guarantee sustainability, but without the celebration of local distinctiveness it is just another resort Carey (2006). There is increased demand for such kind of tourism as Stueve et al. (2002) claim their geo tourism study indicates that there are at least 55.1 million Americans who could be classified as sustainable tourists or geo tourists and in particular specify a good citizen demographic segment.

3.5 Spiritual tourism as an authentic experience Boyles (2004) appraisal of authenticity means that tourists are searching for a connection with something that is real, unsullied and rooted within the destination, hence the connection to spiritual experience. These visitors increasingly hark back to the good old days, despite the fact that the quality of life has significantly improved since the good old days. Here, tourism destinations have an opportunity to create something real, what is termed a sense of place. Yeoman and Beattie state that destinations which have no history have no anniversaries or festivals to celebrate. It is a destinations image that is shaped by its history, which then creates its sense of place. It is a destinations food, people and places which make up its heritage and its character (Yeoman & McMahon- Beattie, 2006).


Authenticity as a concept is nothing new (Brass, 2006; Chambers, 2005); destinations such as Australia, Canada and China are now promoting authentic experiences. There is a growing desire to obtain experiences and products that are original and the real thing, not contaminated by being fake or impure. This movement away from impurity, the virtual, the spun and the mass-produced in a world seemingly full of falseness needs further explanation (Yeoman et al., 2007). There is a dearth of literature about authenticity and tourism from different philosophical approaches such as positivism, constructivism or post-modernism (Wang, 1999) but whatever your approach, the importance of authenticity is paramount.

It is a fulfilment of moving beyond goods and services to experiences. At one level it means increased spending on holidays, eating out, the theatre and so on. But it also includes special experiences such as white-water rafting or spending a weekend at a health spa (Yeoman et al., 2007). Pine (2004) also observes that, as the experience economy matures, a shift is identified towards authenticity. Consumers decide to buy or not to buy, based on how real they perceive the product/service offering to be. Thus the rendering of authenticity emerges as a selection criterion for tomorrows tourist.

The trend of authenticity is a close fit with the proposition of Spiritual tourism, based upon its nature and offering (Yeoman et al., 2005). The cornerstones of authenticity are quintessentially linked to David Boyles (2004) writing and more. So, to conclude, authenticity should be:


Table 4: Authentic tourism characteristics Ethical An authentic experience should be founded on the principles of community, sustainability and ethical consumption. Natural Tourism should be a natural phenomenon which is pure and not tainted nor manufactured. Natural tourism products are those which are

quintessentially associated with the destination or region. Honest Be honest with your visitors; the tourist industry shouldnt promise something which cant be delivered or produce something tainted by falseness that will spoil the authentic proposition. Simple An authentic experience should be simple to understand in which the visitor can see the benefits. The more complicated the experience, the more unbelievable it will be. As the world is full of complications, an authentic experience should be simple, pure and consumed in an inconspicuous manner. Beautiful Authentic destinations have a beauty about them, whether this is a magnificent view which creates a sense or place, or the feeling that experience cannot be copied as it belongs there and only there. Rooted Authenticity has some sense of past which is rooted in the destination or community. India is often known as a home of spirituality especially for yoga. Human A human experience is something that is living and people-focused. This means that the tourist wants human contact which is local and real. Adapted from Yeoman, et al. (2007)


The importance of all of the above is to understand how this trend is developing and whether it will last. This can surely provide an opportunity for the tourism industry especially for those providers who are trying to be authentic and appeal to visitors whilst also undertaking niche marketing. As long as technology and realistic life continues to develop at the pace they are, the need for human contact and for traditional activities will increase. As consumers become even more empowered and cynical of fake promises, they will continue to seek out the authentic in their own way (Yeoman et al., 2007)

3.6 The role of tour guides in providing authentic experience Authentic tourism refers not to consumption of the real or genuine (Reisinger & Steiner, 2006) but rather to individual and personal tourist experiences that contribute to ones sense of identity and connectedness with the world (Steiner & Reisinger, 2006). The authors suggest that the individual and personal dimension of authentic tourism should extend to people making up their own minds about how they experience and interpret the toured world. This could certainly mean that tour guides in their current incarnation might be largely superfluous in authentic tourism. But it might be a worthwhile philosophical exercise to examine what tour guides do, see what that tells us about the concepts of meaning-making and interpretation, and perhaps recast their role to find a place for them in authentic tourism. Finding a role for tour guides in authentic tourism calls for a rethink of what tour guides most commonly do. It also calls for a reconceptualisation of interpretation as a tour guide responsibility (Reisinger & Steiner, 2006).


According to Ap and Wong (2001), mediating and culture broking are two interpretive functions of the tour guides work. Tour guides mediate between tourists, locals and the environment. Mediating moves beyond telling tourists how to think and feel about their experiences; it is about leading them to their own conclusions and letting them learn. Culture broking is the act of bridging, linking or mediating between groups or persons of differing cultural backgrounds for the purpose of reducing conflict or producing change (Jezewski & Sotnik, 2001).

Ap and Wong (2001) believe tour guides interpretive work plays a vital role in enhancing visitors experience and understanding of a destination and its culture. Ap and Wong (2001) say tour guides, through their knowledge and understanding of a destinations attractions and culture and through their communication skills, transform tourists visits from tours into experiences. Moscardo (1998) identifies three main ways in which interpretation can contribute to the quality of visitors experience. These are: (1) providing information on the available options so tourists can make the best choices about what they do and where they go; (2) providing information to encourage safety and comfort so tourists know how to cope with and better manage encountered difficulties (e.g. sea sickness) and understand messages given by the warning signs (e.g. you cannot swim here); and (3) creating the actual experience so tourists can participate in activities such as guided walks, ecotourism, visit art galleries, fauna sanctuaries or zoos, and learn in areas of educational interest.


3.7 Summary There is no doubt that a wave of interest in spiritual holidays has stirred the mainstream, moving the sector on to a new phase of development. The WHO warns that depression and mental health problems will be the second-largest disease burden by 2020 (cited in Mintel 2007), and this would indicate that stress, and the need to cope with increasingly fast-paced modern lives, is not going to go away. Going to an alternative therapist or doing a yoga class for exercise is one thing, but signing up on a yoga retreat, or to engage in life coaching while on holiday, is not yet mainstream practice. However, demand is increasing, as evidenced by the amount of new businesses entering the market, and has shown accelerated growth in the past five years. In particular, growth at the top end, and in holistic spas, is bringing the alternative world to an increasingly discerning clientele. Previously almost non-existent, luxury spiritual holidays is one of the fastest-growing sectors within holistic tourism (Mintel, 2007).


Table 5: Literature review Matrix

Spiritual tourism Author Source Conceptualisation Motivation Authenticity Sustainability

Aggarwal el, al. 2008


understanding with deep, often religious, feelings and beliefs, including a persons sense of peace, purpose, connection to others, and beliefs about the meaning of life Tourists are searching for a connection with something that is real, unsullied and rooted within the destination. The spiritual traveller wants to establish or document intimate closeness and attachment to and with the subject of their journey an all-purpose word, but one that describes what is felt to be missing rather than specifying. The spiritual search . . . has become a dominant feature of late twentieth-century life: a symptom of collective uncertainty Authentic-seeking that of searching for a non-material, authentic and deeper experience. tourism destinations have an opportunity to create something real

Boyle 2004


Brass 2006

Research Paper

Brown 1998



Author Carey 2006

Source Web article

Conceptualisation can be a powerful tool of development, but its potential can also be wasted


Spiritual tourism Authenticity

Sustainability sustainable tourism will be a core driver in the future as destinations shape their image.

Chaline 2002 Doohan, 1990

Book Book spiritual tourism area has been in research for many years however peoples awareness of spiritual tourism is still an area to study conceptual discussions of leisure or tourism often have spiritual overtones or link leisure with spirituality Conceptual discussions of leisure and tourism have made references to spirituality however there is a rarity of theoretical reflection and empirical study on how these two concepts may be related It has been long recognised that a variable relationship exists between the institutions of spirituality and tourism.

the opportunity to feel different from the way we feel at home

states spiritual tourism as an extraordinary experience

Godbey, 1989


Heintzman, 2002


McDowell, 1986



Spiritual tourism Author Melchers 2006 Source Journal Conceptualisation a movement rather than a division, because in common with other natural religious, there is no structural religious institution, but instead an explosion of classes, worships and seminars focusing on some aspect of new age teaching spiritual tourism similarly as involving travelling to a destination to engage in the practice of yoga and related activities that enhance physical, mental or spiritual well-being is a more abstract, multi-faith and eclectic one in which tourists seeks meaning, engagement and peace through activities such as meditation. Motivation visit meaning and investigate on the spot whether they experience anything sustainable here Authenticity A place is visited that has been consecrated and so is suitable for soul-searching. Sustainability

Mintel 2009


Mintel 2007


Pine 2004


as the experience economy matures, a shift is identified towards authenticity. individual and personal tourist experiences that contribute to ones sense of identity and connectedness with the world

Reisinger & Steiner, 2006



Spiritual tourism Author Schlesinger, 2006 Source Web article Conceptualisation Motivation Authenticity Sustainability

Sustainability and authenticity go hand in hand where communities build a tourism product which belongs to their community, for example, the Kawaza Village tourism project in central Zambia where tourists can stay in an authentic African village, learn about environmental issues, collect wild honey, and find out about apiculturists Spiritual tourism is a tourism that is motivated by faith or religious reasons has been in evidence for centuries a journey drove by faith, religion and spiritual fulfilment one that provides the visitor with activities and/or treatments aimed at developing, maintaining and improving the body, mind and spirit Increased demand of such kind of tourism. tourism may be considered as a spiritual activity an opportunity for human being to recognise and encourage their spiritual needs, but also tourism, as a particular use of such free time has come to seen as a spiritual journey philosophical approaches such as positivism, constructivism or postmodernism a tourist who may seek to satisfy some personal or spiritual need through tourism.

Sharply and Sundram, 2005 Smith 1992



Smith and Kelly 2006


Stueve et al. 2002 Vukonic, 1996

Research Paper Book

Wang, 1999



Spiritual tourism Author Yeoman & McMahonBeattie, 2006 Source Journal Conceptualisation Motivation Authenticity a destinations image that is shaped by its history, which then creates its sense of place. It is a destinations food, people and places which make up its heritage and its character movement away from impurity, the virtual, the spun and the mass-produced in a world seemingly full of falseness needs further explanation Sustainability

Yeoman et al., 2007



Chapter Four Internal environment analysis of India: The state of Gujarat

In this chapter the internal environmental analysis of India: Gujarat is discussed. Traditionally, destinations are regarded as well-defined geographical areas, such as a country, an island or a town (Hall, 2000; Davidson & Maitland, 1997). However, it is increasingly recognised that a destination can also be perceptual concept, which can be interpreted subjectively by consumers, depending on their travel itinerary, cultural background, and purpose of visit, educational level and past experience. For example, London can be a destination for a German business traveller, whilst Europe may be the destination for a leisure Japanese tourist who packs six European countries in a two week tour. In today's global economy, tourism presents an important economic activity for both developed and developing economies (Yelmaz & Bititci, 2006).

In order to evaluate Gujarats potential for developing spiritual tourism for sustainability, a destination audit is carried out by using Buhalis (2000a) 6-As model shown below. Table 6: Six As frame work for the analysis of tourism destination Natural, man-made, artificial, purpose built, heritage, special events Entire transportation system comprising of routes, Accessibility terminals and vehicles Accommodation and catering facilities, retailing, other Amenities tourist services Pre-arranged packages by intermediaries and Available principals packages All activities available at the destination and what consumers Activities will do during their visit Services used by tourists such as banks, telecommunications, Ancillary post, newsagents, hospitals, etc services Source: Buhalis (2000a) Attraction


4.1 India India is the worlds seventh largest country, covering 3.3 million sq km, or around a third of the size of the US. Running 2,933km from east to west and 3.214km from north to south, and geographically diverse, it is divided into five zones the north, south, east, west and north east. It is bordered by Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Nepal, Bhutan, Burma and Bangladesh, the Bay of Bengal in the east, the Arabian Sea in the west and the Indian Ocean in the south. The River Ganges, the worlds largest river delta, snakes through the country from west to east. Its geography extends from the snow-capped mountains of the Himalaya to the deserts of Rajasthan and the beaches and lush topical greenery of the south. The Andaman, Nicobar and Lakshadweep islands lie off the coast (Mintel, 2009).

Indias fascinating history, stretching 5,000 years, starts with the Indus civilisation and features the birth of the Hindu, Buddhist and Jainism religions and great civilisations such as the Moghul Empire, which left world treasures such as the Taj Mahal. European influence started with the Portuguese, who colonised Goa in the 16th century, and then the British, who dominated from the late 18th century until independence in 1947, leaving their own architectural legacy. Emerging as the worlds largest democracy, modern India is a union of 28 states and seven union territories (Mintel, 2009).


Figure 2: Map of India



4.1.1 India the worlds spiritual home Ever since hippie travellers ventured out in the 1960s, India has been associated with spirituality. From being the originator of major world religions and gurus followed by the Beatles, who brought their teachings to the West, it is also the origin of the therapeutic approach of Ayurveda, the place where yoga was invented, and is the most popular holistic holiday destination in the 21st century. India, perhaps, has more authority and authenticity in holistic offerings than any other country (Mintel, 2009).

The Indian Tourist Board pays testimony to this by including spiritual and pilgrimage tourism as two out of twelve holiday ideas for the country. (Spiritual tourism includes Ayurveda, spas, yoga and wellness centres which here means medical Ayurveda and serious holistic health offerings. Pilgrimage tourism appeals mainly to the large Indian Diaspora and devotees worldwide.) In 2004, yoga images were used against a backdrop of the Himalayas in its Incredible India campaign, which branded the country. In 2006, 54 percent of tourists came from the US and Western Europe, and 650,000 originated from the UK, Indias leading Western market (Mintel, 2009).

The East is now coming into its own, marketing its spiritual offerings along with its cultural life. Ayurveda, for example, is practised to some degree in every Indian home, and vegetarianism, yoga and meditation is an intrinsic part of life for many. However, as Smith and Kelly (2006a) mentions Indian swamis for whom this is a way of life, have had little interest in the quick-fix holiday market, so India is only now starting to harness its potential. (Mintel, 2009).


4.1.2Tourism in India With a history of over 5,000 years, Indias cultural and spiritual heritage has long captivated visitors, but it is only in the last four years that the country has been hogging the headlines for the right reasons. As modern India has become one of the worlds tiger economies, it has simultaneously stepped out to tell the world what the country has to offer, with its highly successful Incredible India campaign launched in 2002-03. It is now confident and outspoken about meeting the needs of the luxury traveller. Following the liberalisation of the skies and favourable investment policies in the last few years paving the way to an increase in international tourism, it is also boldly diversifying away from its traditional cultural tourism product. (Mintel, 2009).

The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) identify India as a large and fast-growing travel and tourism economy. It made a speedy recovery after 9/11, the dispute with Pakistan in 2003 and the tsunami in 2004, thanks largely to effective promotion abroad. The country has seen remarkable growth in tourist arrivals, an increase of 45.5percent in foreign tourism arrivals in the two years from 2004 and 2005 and with 4.45 million, achieved a record number during 2006. A corresponding increase in foreign exchange earnings from tourism by 62.2percent and a further 14.6percent from 2005-06 has boosted an already booming economy. It is already buoyant domestic market also posted record arrivals, increasing by 18.1percent over 2005 to a total 461.16 million arrivals in 2006 (Mintel, 2009).


Table 7: FTA in India Year 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Source: Bureau of Immigration Foreign tourist arrivals (mn) 2.29 2.37 2.36 2.48 2.65 2.54 2.38 2.73 3.46 3.92 4.45 % change over previous year 8 3.5 -0.4 5.1 6.9 -4.2 -6.3 14.7 26.7 13.3 13.5

4.1.3 Domestic Tourism in India The potential of domestic tourism has grown substantially during the last few years due to an increase in income levels and emergence of a dynamic urban middle class. However, there are no precise estimates of total domestic tourist traffic in the country. All the State/ Union Territory Governments were, therefore, persuaded to set up Statistical Cell for the collection of domestic tourism statistics through accommodation establishments and furnish them to the Ministry of Tourism on a monthly basis. As per the figures reported by the State/UT Governments, the domestic tourists during the year 2007 are estimated to be 527 million, showing a growth of 13.9 percent as compared to the year 2006(Incredible India report, 2008).


Table8: Domestic tourists market share in India Rank 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total of top ten Others Grand total Source: State/UT Tourism Departments State Andhra Pradesh Uttar Pradesh Tamil Nadu Karnataka Rajasthan Maharashtra Uttaranchal West Bengal Gujarat Madhya Pradesh % share 24.2 22.9 12.7 7.8 5.1 3.7 3.6 3.4 2.5 2.4 88.3 11.7 100

Table above shows that 88.3percent of domestic tourists were spread over ten states, the top four states of Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh attracted almost half of these in 2006, with a combined 47.1percent of market share, and with Tamil Nadu (12.7percent) and Karnataka (7.8percent) accounting for 67.6percent of visits. A high proportion of domestic travel is to pilgrimage and cultural heritage sites, with the top places reported by the IPS as the Taj Mahal and the temples of Khajuraho, along with Kerala and Goas beaches. In 2006, domestic tourists were also exploring new areas, most likely following Incredible India promotions. Gujarat is ranked at no 9 in market share. Therefore this study is focused on potential of spiritual tourism development in Gujarat.


4.2 Gujarat Gujarat has a long historical and cultural tradition dating back to the days of the Indus valley civilization established by relics found at Lothal. Situated in the western part of the Indian sub-continent, Gujarat derives its name from the "Gurjars" who passed through Punjab and settled in some parts of Western India (Lonely planet, 2009). Figure 3: Location of Gujarat in India.

Source: Vibrant Gujarat

According to the Hindu epics, Lord Krishna and his elder brother Balarama, evacuated Mathura and established their kingdom Kushasthali, now known as Dwarka and started what is known as the Yadava dynasty. Dwarka subsequently became one of the four seats (mathas) set up by Adi Shankaracharya. The Parsees when they led from Iran in the eighth century first landed at Sanjan on the shores of Gujarat with the holy flame, which still burns in Udwada in Valsad. The Muslim influence left its lasting imprints on the local art and architecture and it came to be known as the Indo-Saracenic style. Among the earliest Europeans in Gujarat were the Portuguese who settled in Diu, a small island off the southern coast of Saurashtra. When British Empire first travelled to India, they had set up their first warehouses in Surat in 1612 (Vibrant Gujarat, 2009).


Gujarat was a part of the erstwhile Mumbai state during the British Rule. However, in 1960, the 'Gujarati' population decided to secede from that union, which resulted in the formation of two new states, namely Gujarat and Maharashtra. The new State of Gujarat came into existence on May 01; 1960.Gujarat is the birthplace of many leaders who played an important role in shaping modern India. Prominent among them are Shri Dadabhai Navroji, the grand old man of India's independence struggle, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, the architect of a united India and Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the Nation. These men carried the torch of national freedom and integration infusing the qualities of tolerance, brotherhood, non-violence and patriotism amongst Indians (TCGL, 2007)

4.2.1 Gujarat Tourism. In tune with the goal to examine potential of developing Gujarat as the most favoured Spiritual tourism destination, Gujarat has aggressively adopted the concept into tourism promotion using Vibrant Gujarat. As part of its Navratri Celebrations, Vibrant Gujarat, the Government of Gujarat took the opportunity to promote its cultural facilities and spiritual expertise making Gujarat as a destination for spiritual tourism for Non Resident Indians specifically Non Resident Guajaratis NRIs and NRGs are coming to Gujarat to visit religious places which is estimated to be contributing 25-31 percent of the industry earnings. The Gujarati community comprises of 32percent of the total 20.1 million people of Indian origin worldwide. Gujarats medical expertise and the strength of its facilities are better than those of some of the south-east Asian nations and Gujarat hospitals are working lot harder selling abroad (Bhattacharya, 2008).


4.2.3 Current state of tourism in Gujarat The total flow of tourist during the year 2006-07 was 12.34 million and recorded a growth of 15percent over the previous year. Growth of 18.5percent was observed in the tourist flow from foreign countries during 2006-07 with a number of more than 200,000 foreign tourists in 2006-07 and around 1, 75,000 in 2005-06. Ahmadabad, Ambaji and Dwarka are the major tourist destinations which invited maximum number of tourist in Gujarat. These three destinations accounted for 33percent of the total tourist flow in the state Almost 78percent of the tourist flow in 2006 - 07 was from within Gujarat. The share of

other Indian states was 20.6percent. The foreign tourists accounted for 1.68percent in the total tourist flow. The majority of the tourists (53percent) in the state are business tourists, subsequently followed by religious visit (35percent). 8percent of the of the tourist visit for the leisure purpose, which is showing an increase in the trend (TCGL, 2007)

Figure 4: Tourists origin (2006-07)

Source: Tourist flow in Gujarat, TCGL annual report, 2006-07


Table 9: Purpose of tourist flow Purpose

(numbers in millions) 2006-07 flow Numbers % 6.53 53 0.96 8 4.33 35 0.53 4 12.34 100

2004-05 flow 2005-06 flow Numbers % Numbers % 4.06 54 5.87 55 Business 0.39 5 0.51 5 Leisure 2.81 37 3.84 36 Religion 0.34 4 0.48 4 Other 7.61 100 10.70 100 Total Source: Tourist flow in Gujarat, TCGL annual report, 2006-07

4.3 6As of Gujarat Tourists' overall experience is composed of numerous small encounters with a variety of tourism principals, such as taxi drivers, hoteliers, waiters, as well as with elements of the local attractions such as museums, theatres, beaches, theme parks, etc (Buhalis, 2000a). Their overall impression develops their image of a destination after their visitation. As a consequence there is much overlapping between strategic marketing of the destination as a whole and of each individual supplier at the region. The competitiveness of each player is often interrelated and almost indistinguishable from one another. Hence, the management and evaluation of the destination is often required (Buhalis, 2000a).

4.3.1 Attractions According to Lew 1987 (cited in Hall, 1996) tourism attractions are all those elements of a non-home place that draw discretionary travellers away from their homes. MacCannell 1976 (Cited in Hall, 1996) suggests tourism attractions consist of three components: tourists; a site to be viewed and a marker or image which makes the site significant. Tourism attractions may be classified in many ways. Examples of such classifications include: natural, human-modified, and human-made; natural and built; resource-oriented, intermediate, and user-oriented (often reflecting their distance from centres of demand); international, national, regional, and local (reflecting their ability to draw visitors from a variety of distances); indoor

and outdoor; public or private (reflecting the attributes of the authority responsible for their operation); permanent, seasonal, or occasional and more (Hall, 1996).

In the table shown on the following page, spiritual attractions are presented with their history. They are mainly divided in two parts; manmade and natural.


Table 10: Tourist attractions Gujarat Akshardham Temple This temple has been built in the memory of Lord Swaminarayan. Which is been located in capital of state Gujarat the city of Gandhinagar. Mosque of Sidi Saiyad Ahmadabad has a large number of mosques but the most famous is the Sidi Saiyad Mosque built in 1571 AD, which is acclaimed for its splendid filigree screen, framed in the ten semi-circular windows. Gandhi Ashram The Gandhi Ashram along the Sabarmati river was once Gandhiji's nerve centre for the Indian freedom movement. The Gandhi Memorial Centre, Library and much more can be seen at the Ashram Lothal In Lothal excavations have brought to light an ancient port complete with dockyard measuring 218 x 37 metres connected to sea through river Bhagava. Streets laid out in chess-board pattern, dividing the town into many blocks, houses with bathrooms and underground drainage system are identical to the ones found at Mohenjo-Daro and various arts and artefacts are the interesting features of this place. Somnath The legendary shore temple of Somnath is one of the most sacred Shiva shrines in India. According to legend, Somnath is as old as creation, built by the Moon God himself. Through the turbulent centuries, Somnath was ransacked and rebuilt seven times.

Man Made attractions



The ancient sacred city, on the edge of the Saurashtra peninsula was once the capital of Lord Krishna's empire where he had shifted from Mathura thousands of years ago. The main attraction is the Dwarkadhish Temple.

Man Made attractions

Buddhist Cave Monastery

Buddhist Cave Monastery of Junagarh is one of the major tourist attractions of Gujarat. Located on the ancient Uparkot Fort complex, these two storied Buddhist Caves, lined in three rows, represent amazing examples of rock-cut architecture with ornamented pillars, carved entrances, water cisterns. These centuries old ancient caves are believed to be from the period of Mauryan Emperor Asoka, the Great (304237 BC). The Cave Monastery has a gallery with uniquely carved pillars. The outstanding feature of the Monastery is a central hall on the lowest storey, connected by a winding staircase to a well-ventilated chamber illuminated by a shaft, which seems to have served as a refractory. The base, shaft and the pillars of the Monastery have stone carvings of unique designs.

Gujarat Ayurvedic University

This was established in 1967 by an act passed by Gujarat State legislative Assembly in 1965. It is the first statutory University of its Kind both at national and international level - exclusively devoted to Ayurvedic studies and Research. This University is administratively linked to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare both at State and Centre-indicating its special status



Man Made

Dr Agravat Best Ayurvedic, Yoga, Meditation & Spa

Dr Agravats best Ayurvedic Centre in Ahmadabad India, managed by reputed Dr Agravat Healthcare Ltd. and Dr. Harsha Agravat who had been Awarded by Gujarat state Home Minister, Gujarat state Educational Chairman, APMC Vice Chairman. Dr Agravats Ayurvedic Centre Provides treatment of Digestive Disorder, Skin Disease Joint Disorders, Respiratory Disease, Urinary problem, Sexual Problems, Diabetes, all Types of Disease related To Nervous System, Joint and Pain Management, Pimples Dandruff, Loss of hair, Black Spots, Dark circles, Underdeveloped Breast, Obesity Yoga and Meditation.


Along the coastline, Dandi has been known as the salt centre. It gained a place of pride after the famous Dandi March Satyagraha, in 1930, by Mahatma Gandhi.

Natural Attractions


This place is famous as the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi. Kirti Mandir, where Gandhi was born, today, houses a photo exhibition on the life and times of the Mahatma, a library, a prayer hall are other memorabilia.


Gujarat can really boast of a rich variety of wild and rare fauna. Gir forest is the only place in the world, outside Africa, where the lion can be seen in its natural habitat. Also one might come across a host of other herbivores like Chital, Nilgai, Blue Bull and rare four horned antelope.

Source: Gujarat India, Tourism India, India pages, Sulekha Travel


4.3.2 Accessibility The state of Gujarat has one of the most extensive and traffic intensive road network in the country. The total road length in Gujarat currently stands at about 74500 km. This can broadly be divided into a core and a non-core network. The core network comprises of the National Highways and around 6000 kilometres of State Highways, while the balance constitutes the Non-core State Highways, Major District Roads, Other District Roads and Village Roads (GIDB, 2009).

The national highway network of Gujarat has benefited from the Golden Quadrilateral and North South East West axis of the National Highway Development Program passing through the State. Further, the pioneering PPP Roads, expressways, six lane projects (under advanced phases of NHDP), prudent use of external funding and a relatively better maintenance regime has led to a relatively better quality national highway network in the state compared to many other parts of the country. The State has implemented several network improvement initiatives such as the World Bank funded roads, Pragati Path, Kisan Path and Vikas Path road development programs. Such programs have led to substantial improvement of several key stretches of State Highways, offering fairly sound ridership experiences (GIDB, 2009).

Indian Railways, the prime movers of the nation, is pivotal to the development of the country. It is the third largest network under a single management. It carries largest number of passengers (approximately 6.7 billion in a year) and one of the largest volumes of cargo (794 million tonnes in the year 2007-08) among the worlds major rail systems. The improvements are recommended based on the percentage utilization of the railway links. An increase of about


20 percent over the present broad gauge track capacity was assumed in 2007 due to technological improvement (GIDB, 2009).

Gujarat possesses one of the largest networks of airports and airfields in the country. It has 17 airports, including one international airport, under the operational jurisdiction of Airports Authority of India (AAI). All except three airports are operational and most run scheduled fights, through there are cyclical variations. Apart from AAI airports, there are three airstrips under State Government jurisdiction located at Mehsana, Amreli, and Mandvi (GIDB, 2009).

4.3.3Amenities People travel from one place to another including both national and international destinations need to contain accommodation for the travellers because the moment that travellers move to another place, their expectation is to obtain food and drink to sustain them and somewhere to sleep. Thus, hotels are established in order to match these demands. The boundaries between tourism, travel, leisure and hospitality are not easy to determine, as they blend gradually into or overlap with each other. From the hospitality industry perspective, the key point is that people at tourist destinations demand a range of activities includes accommodation, food and beverages (Knowles et al, 2001). Previously, hotels provided basics like food, drink and room. As the hospitality industry changes, the demand of customers has changed as well. Additional demands have been made such as greater variety and improved quality of food, bigger and nicer rooms, and high quality services at an acceptable price and so forth.


Table 11: heritage properties, star hotels and resorts for tourists in Gujarat
Hotels 3star Cambay resort Hotel Sarovar

5star City Ahmadabad Le Meridian

4star The pride hotel Fortune Landmark Taj Residency Cama Park plaza The metro pole hotel Taj gateway Lords Park Inn


Heritage Hotels The House of MG


Best Western Yuvraj

Budget inn Hospice

Hotel sarita Lords Plaza


Taj Residency Surya Palace ITC Welcome

Ginger Vadodara Gateway Akota Express Towers Royal Oasis Orchad palace

Wankaner Gondal Dandasa (kutch Dessert) Bhavnagar

Rann Riders


Source: trip advisor, TCGL

4.3.4 Available package To assess availability of spiritual tour package Gujarat state tourism ministry website and tour package providers websites like Thomas Cook India and SOTC tours were analysed. According to SOTC (2009) India is known as the land of spirituality and philosophy and is the birthplace of some of the worlds great religions. With its colour, public rituals and private devotion, religious faith is expressed with fervour across the length and breadth of this country. However during web site audit researcher found that SOTC does not sell any spiritual tour packages specific to Gujarat. On the other hand while auditing Thomas cook India website researcher found one tour package specific to spiritual temple tour of Gujarat. The sample of available tour package from Thomas cook India is latterly presented in external analysis chapter, economic section.

While researching Gujarat tourism ministry website, the researcher came to analyse that the tourism Gujarat web site is a very useful tool to identify tour packages for Gujarat. There are tour packages on sell from both tourism ministry and local tour operators together with international drivers like Thomas cook. It also provides services like booking of a tour guide, hotels and car rentals. However while using internet search tool Google to search for available tour packages in Gujarat, there are many results displayed but Gujarat tourism ministry website does not come on first page.

4.3.5Activities One of the spiritual activities to be found in Gujarat is religious activity, mainly visiting temples. A temple is a place which promotes Indian art, culture and values. The foundation stone of this temple was laid by the spiritual leader of BAPS (Bochasanwasi Shri Abar Purushottam Sanstha), Parmukh Swami Maharaj on 14th December 1979 and it was opened for common people on October 30, 1992. The Akshardham Temple complex nicely combines devotions, art, architecture, education, exhibitions and research at a single spot and it is popular among tourists visiting the state of Gujarat. Akshardham Temple is a place where art is ageless, culture is borderless and morals are timeless. Moreover, it takes you to a world of peace and harmony (Vacations India, 2009).

Navratri is the most famous festival of Gujarat around the world. Navratri is group of 'nine nights', where Guajarati people enjoy festival with joy and religious, for nine nights. This is an ancient and colourful festival. Navratri honours the one Divine Shakti or Force which supports the entire universe, and is personified as the Mother Goddess. She protects her worshippers, destroys evil and grants blessings to her children. This Navratri festival is essentially religious


in nature. The Gujarat government organizes Vibrant Navratri Festival since last seven years. Vibrant Navratri Festival would showcase the tourism potential and important pilgrimage centres of the state. Under the special scheme, Saputara hill station is going to be developed in the coming days (Vibrant Gujarat, 2009).

4.3.6Ancillary services National or regional tourists organisations are used by both tourists and travel trade for additional information, support documentations, classification and inspection of tourism products and special arrangements. In this sense they facilitate the tourism distribution channel function. A numbers of organisations offering ancillary services such as bank, news agencies, restaurants, hospitals and so on seem to promote and organise travelling. Therefore they may be able to considered support part of tourist activity (Buhalis & Laws, 2001).

The Central Bank of India has planned to extend its core banking solutions (CBS) services to all important towns and cities of Gujarat. It has also planned to increase its business among agriculture, small and medium scale enterprises (SME) and retail and ancillary sectors in the state. Disclosing that the CBS has been launched in Ahmadabad, according to the assistant regional manager of Central Bank, R.K. Kaushik (Cited in The financial express, 2006) the bank was now all set to offer CBS to its account holders in Vadodara. It would also be offered at Jamnagar, Surat, Rajkot and other major and mid-size towns of the state (Financial express, 2006).


There is availability of ancillary business organisations like Shree Akshar International. Shree Akshar International, an ancillary business organization in the tourism industry, began in 1997. It catered to various services like procurement of passport and visa privileges for various countries, railway ticket booking, car rentals, operator of Ahmadabad Tour, Ahmadabad Holidays, Gujarat Tour, Gujarat Holidays etc. Seeing the vast potential in the tourism industry, Akshar Travels Pvt. Ltd. was born in 1997. Akshar Travels offers new products and concepts from time to time (Article base, 2009).

4.5 Summary To summarise the internal analysis of Gujarat, is relatively new destination and therefore could be a novel attraction to spiritual tourists. Noticeable numbers of attractions and activities require be establishing as a sustainable spiritual destination and also noticeable good numbers of supporting objects like accommodation, ancillary services and significantly improving infrastructure.

State government is taking significant steps to promote tourism both domestic and globally. Gujarat tourism has a good descriptive and informative web site. On the web site there is information about place, activities, and hotels. It is easy to navigate web site which has all required information needs for one to visit Gujarat. However it lacks visibility on internet searches. As mentioned earlier the researcher noticed that while the internet search Google was used to search the availability of package, it was not found immediately via search result.


Chapter Five External analysis of India: Gujarat

This chapter analyses macro/external factors affecting or helping development of spiritual tourism in Gujarat. Firstly it looks at the Tourism Product are Life Cycle of spiritual tourism in Gujarat and is then followed by explanations of SWOT and PESTL analysis. The aim of looking at these models is to assess the current situation of Spiritual tourism in Gujarat.

A SWOT analysis is carried out to concentrate on the situational analysis into a listing of the most relevant problems and opportunities and assess how well the firm is equipped to deal with them. A PESTL analysis is carried out to analyse such factors that are usually beyond any organisations control. However in case of the Spiritual tourism, state government in cooperation with central government can create certain policies to promote tourism in both domestic and international markets.

5.1 Tourism life cycle Furthermore this study introduces the Tourism Area Life Cycle and reviews its origin and uses. This concept helps to establish where the spiritual tourism in Gujarat stands in TALC. In can be argued that tourists are dynamic, they evolve and change over time (Butler, 2006). The evolution includes a variety of factors including changes in the preferences and needs of visitors. The pattern which put forward here is based on the product life cycle concept. In this case sales of a product proceed slowly at first, experience a rapid growth, stabilize, and subsequently decline (Butler, 2006). As an example, initially tourists come to a destination in

small numbers restricted by barriers like lack of access, facilities, and local knowledge. With marketing, information dissemination, and further facilities popularity grows. This leads to increase in numbers of visitors. The rate of increase in visitor declines as levels of carrying capacity are reached.

The concept of a destination life cycle has apparent potential to advance theory and practice of tourism planning, particularly as a conceptual framework within long term changes or developments can be forecasted and strategies for a destination as an economic development and marketing can be harmonised (Getz, 1992). According to Debbage (1990) most references to the life cycle of destinations focuses on numbers of visitors and capacity issues, with the implications that visitations declines as capacity thresholds are reached. This premises a controversial, in part due to the various interpretations of capacity and the many possible approaches to dealing with capacity threshold.

In the case of the Spiritual tourism life cycle in Gujarat, according to data provide in annual report of Gujarat tourism demonstrates that spiritual tourism can be identified on developing state as it accounts for 35 percent of the total tourist arrival in Gujarat (TCGL, 2009).


Figure 5: Tourism Life cycle. Spiritual Tourism Gujarat

Source: Kotler and Armstrong (1990) Times Foundation (2009), is actively seeking to promote the concept of spiritual tourism in India. According to the organisation people are aware of religious tours - but that is only one aspect of spirituality. When applying Butler (2006) TPLC model to the above argument it can be said that spiritual tourism is at developing stage. The Times Foundation has partnered with tourist offices and organisations towards popularizing spiritual tourism in India. Encouraged by the Incredible India campaign of India Tourist Development Corporation (ITDC), Times Foundation associated with several international organisations to promote spiritual tourism abroad as well. This spiritual tourism is an eight-year project for developing the planet into a joyful home for all its inhabitants. The project includes a spiritual, social and cultural agenda, ultimately leading to a new consciousness of mutual responsibility and sincere respect for all forms of life (Times Foundation, 2009).

5.2 S.W.O.T. analysis SWOT analysis (the evaluation of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) is not a new technique, but has been developed to assess the status and prospects of businesses.


Strengths and weaknesses are internal to the entity under evaluation whereas opportunities and threats refer to the broad context or environment in which the entity operates (Lawhead, et, al., 1992). The former are more likely to be under the control of the entity than the latter, although the latter are no less important than the former in influencing the well-being of the enterprise. Judgment is exercised in assigning a particular phenomenon to an analytical category.

The SWOT procedure has been used in many planning and development situations as a tool for organizing and interpreting information. It is widely utilized by consultants but seldom by academics. Only limited related literature is to be found in academic tourism publications. Examples of such use in tourism research include Walls (2002) SWOT analysis in Baoting, China, Mansfield, Ron and Gevs (2000) analysis of Muslim tourism to Israel, and Rahmats (2000) work on the status of ecotourism in the Togean Islands in Indonesia.

Figure 6: Frame work for SWOT analysis

Source: Collins-Kreiner & Wall (2007)


SWOT is a method of organizing information (Wall, 2002). It is simple and useful, especially for preliminary research and as a basis for more applied and theoretical work. One advantage, as well as a disadvantage of SWOT analysis, is the fact that it is an evaluation method. The emphasis on evaluation makes the work more applied than theoretical. On the other hand, SWOT is a holistic method, including a multiplicity of dimensions, particularly when expanded as indicated in the three-dimensional framework described above (Collins-Kreiner & Wall (2007). However for this particular study one communal SWOT analysis has been carried out containing all three aspects include local, national and regional. The SWOT analysis of Gujarat is shown below in tabular format and explanations are given further.


Table 12: SWOT analysis of Gujarat

International cooperation Average length of stay Rich culture Hospitable people Pleasant weather which is ideal for the tourists Many attractions and activities to offer

lack of Professional Management Inadequacy of information channels Inadequacy of marketing Low awareness in the internal market about the tourism products of the region


Fast expansions Rapidly growing middle class Increase in disposable income Unique experience for the visitors Increase in FTA in overall India Potential market for foreign tourists Health consciousness is increasing world wide

Various other places in India are providing stiff competition. Competition from other state which have made impact on intermodal market already like Kerala, Goa and Rajasthan. Environmental factors also impose a threat.



5.2.1 Strengths As mentioned previously in the internal analysis chapter, Gujarat has good resources for tourism, more especially for developing Spiritual tourism because of the diverse environment. Accommodation and basic infrastructure that could suit different tourist activities are present including average two star hotels to luxury heritage hotels which makes ideal place for such tourists. Accessibility and transportation are also good. Gujarat can be reached by air from many places worldwide. The area has good resources for spiritual because of the environment. It has a many religious sites to visit. It is also a new tourism destination. The whole region of Gujarat is a relatively new destination and therefore could be a novel attraction to spiritual tourists. Gujarati people are known as one of the most hospitable people in India (Singh, 2003).

There are more than 400 archaeological sites in the state including some of the most substantial excavations of Indus Valley civilization period at Lothal (near Ahmadabad), Surkotada and Dholavira (in Kutch). The archaeological zone of Champaner - Pavagadh have been acclaimed by UNESCO as the World Heritage Site because of its great mosques, temples, step wells and forts. The Wild Ass sanctuary, Dholavira Harappan City and Rani-Ki-Vav are in the process of getting status of the World Heritage site (TCGL, 2009).

There are international players in the market such as Taj and Oberoi & International Chains. Thus the needs of the international tourists are met while they are on a visit to India. Manpower costs in the Indian hotel industry are one of the lowest in the world. This provides better margins for Indian hotel industry. India offers a readymade tourist destination with the resources it has. Thus the magnet to pull customers already exists and has potential grow (Gaur, 2009).


5.2.2 Weakness The cost of land in India is high at 50 percent of total project cost as against 15% abroad. This acts as a major deterrent to the Indian hotel industry. This is one barrier to manmade spiritual resources. The hotel industry in India is heavily staffed. This can be gauged from the facts that while Indian hotel companies have a staff to room ratio of 3:1, this ratio is 1:1 for international hotel companies. High tax structure in the industry makes the industry worse off than its international equivalent. In India the expenditure tax, luxury tax and sales tax inflate the hotel bill by over 30percent. Effective tax in the South East Asian countries works out to only 4 to 5 percent (Gaur, 2009).

5.2.3 Opportunities Demand between the national and the inbound tourists can be easily managed due to difference in the period of holidays. For international tourists the peak season for arrival is between Septembers to March when the climatic conditions are suitable where as the national tourist waits for school holidays, generally the summer months. In the long-term the hotel industry in India has latent potential for growth. This is because India is an ideal destination for tourists as it is the only country with the most diverse topography. For India, the inbound tourists are a mere 0.49 percent of the global figures. This number is expected to increase at a phenomenal rate thus pushing up the demand for the hotel industry. As the number of tourist is increasing, there is a need to identify their requirements and the travel agencies can tap this segment (Gaur, 2009).


5.2.4 Threats These days guest houses are being replaced by hotels. This is a growing trend in the west and is now catching up in India also, thus diverting the hotel traffic (Gaur, 2009). However this does not particularly suit Spiritual tourism as described previously in literature review as such tourism is driven more by individualist tourists. Political turbulence in the area reduces tourist traffic and thus the business of the hotels. In India examples of the same are insurgency in Jammu Kashmir and the Kargil war recent attack in 2008 and the 26th November 2008 terrorist attack on Mumbai city. Such incidents are potential threats in decrease in international tourist. Hence Indian tourism is suddenly experiencing its worst years in recent times (Banerji, 2009). The economic conditions of a country have a direct impact on the earnings in hotel industry. With the advent of the internet, the role of travel agents is changing and the whole industry faces a threat of extinction unless they change to meet the need of tourists. Competition from other states like Kerala, Rajasthan and Goa and tour packages like golden triangle are very popular in both domestic and international market.

5.3 PESTL analysis The aim of strategic analysis is to form a view of the key influences on the present and future well being of the destination and what opportunities are afforded by the environment and the competences of the organisation consideration of culture, environment, capabilities and so on is analysed using such method as PESTL analysis (Bailey et al., 2005).


5.3.1 Political The Indian tourism industry is built on backbone of governments support. Both government national level and state level plays vital role in tourism development. At national level The Ministry of Tourism, is the nodal agency for the formulation of national policies and programs and for the co-ordination of activities of various Central Government Agencies, State Governments/UTs and the Private Sector for the development and promotion of tourism in the country. This Ministry is headed by the Union Minister for Tourism.

Directorate General of Tourism has a field formation of 20 offices within the country and 14 offices abroad and one sub-ordinate office/project i.e. Indian Institute of Skiing and Mountaineering (IISM)/ Gulmarg Winter Sports Project (GWSP). The overseas offices are primarily responsible for tourism promotion and marketing in their respective areas and the field offices in India are responsible for providing information service to tourists and to monitor the progress of field projects. For example the activities of IISM/GWSP have now been revived and various Ski and other courses are being conducted in the Jammu and Kashmir valley in northern India (Ministry of tourism, 2009).

At regional level, Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors Summit 2009 is going truly global this time around with delegations from about 30 countries likely to participate in the event. With Japan as an international partner to the event, the state is likely considerable investments in DelhiMumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) region. While Uganda, Canada, Italy, Korea and Russia have shown interest in sending officials from the ministry level along with business delegation to the event, the state is still in the process of getting government participation from more

countries. Business delegations from countries like US, UK, France, China, Germany, Taiwan, Australia, and Malaysia have shown interest in participating at the event. Besides, many African countries have shown interest in participating at the event according to senior government officials. Earlier in December 2008/09, over 65 British MPs have signed an Early Day Motion (EDM) to support the Vibrant Gujarat campaign. It was for the first time in British Parliament history that so many MPs have supported for an event happening outside the country. Headed by Japanese Ambassador to India Hideaki Domichi, the 18-member contingent from Japan would be accompanied by Japan External Trade Organisation (Business standard, 2009)

The state government, along with the Industrial Extension Bureau and the Tourism Corporation of Gujarat (TCGL) plans to have a second Vibrant Gujarat in October 2010, with focus on the unexploited tourism sector. The state has already issued advertisements in the media to attract investors. State government is planning to sell Gujarat as a major tourism destination to nonresidents Indians (NRIs), non-residents Guajaratis (NRGs) and domestic and international tourists during Navratri (a flock dance festival lasts for nine nights). The government hopes to tap the potential in the tourism sector in the state. The focus is to bring Gujarat in the international tourism map of the world. The focus of the meet will be to promote, eco-tourism, medical-tourism, beach-tourism, and religious tourism. Gujarat has few of the best beaches in the world (TCGL, 2009). If the required infrastructures are developed, the state will have a great tourism potential (Pandey, 2004)


5.3.2 Economical According to World Bank in the past two decades, India has been making sustained progress on a scale, size and pace that is unprecedented in its own history. A low-income country with mass poverty at the time of Independence in 1947, India now has a diminishing pool of very poor people and is poised to cross the threshold to join the ranks of the worlds middle-income countries. Over these past 62 years, the country has been successful on a number of fronts:

It has maintained electoral democracy Reduced absolute poverty by more than half Dramatically improved literacy Vastly improved health conditions Become one of the worlds fastest growing economies with average growth rates of 9 percent over the past four years

Emerged as a global player in information technology, business process outsourcing, telecommunications, and pharmaceuticals (World bank, 2009)

The global financial crisis has, however, not left the country unscathed. Although Indias economy grew at 6.1percent in the quarter ending June 2009 - among the highest growth rates in the world this still represents a significant dip from the annual peak of 9.7 percent in 2006/07. The slowdown is likely to have a large and immediate impact on employment and poverty. Job creation is likely to remain a key concern as new entrants to the labour force relatively better educated and with higher aspirations - continue to put pressure on the job market (World Bank, 2009). In such a scenario tourism development can stand up as an ideal tool for economic development.


Looking from a foreign tourist point of view, economical factors play a vital role in terms of exchange rate. Tourist from west past of the world either from USA or Europe can find to travel India relatively cheaper. Particularly for tourists from USA travel to India is cheaper than Europe. Below an example spiritual tour of temples in northern Gujarat is presented.

Table 13: A tour plan of Gujarat Temple Tour of Gujarat (Ex - Ahmadabad) 8 days from Rs.21390 Prices are per person and reflect land cost only INCLUSIONS

Accommodation on twin sharing basis Daily breakfast at all places Transfers & sightseeing by AC car as per the itinerary All luxury taxes at hotels as on date. Any future levies will be charged extra

ACCOMMODATION & PRICING Single Occupancy Twin Triple Child Child Without Sharing Basis Sharing Basis With Bed Bed (5-12 yrs) Valid from : October 1, 2009 - March 31, 2010 Deluxe Category Rs.21390 Rs.16695 Rs.7310 Rs.2280


All above rates are per person on twin share basis in Indian Rupees Note: 2.58% Govt. service tax extra on total billing

Source: Thomas Cook India Note: For complete tour plan refer to Appendix 1.

It can be seen from table above that average tour of Gujarat temples cost 20,000 Indian rupees, which are around 400USD (as of on 03/12/09 source Whereas for tourist from USA travelling to Europe city break in London would cost around 900 USD.

5.3.3 Socio-Cultural Destination communities are the basic element of modern tourism. They are the focal point for the supply of accommodation, catering, information, transport, and services (Clarke & Godfrey, 2000). The people are the hosts who welcome tourists and preserve and sell the destination. Each religious group identifies themselves as a distinct group regarding their social structure, kinship system, cultural values, worship and prayer pattern, festivals and birthmarriage-death rituals. Within both of the group different subgroups can be observed based on the customary occupations of each.

Needless to say sound culture edifice provides a productive ground for tourism and, at the same time tourism is expected to satisfy its obligations towards the culture of the country. Here it is worth mentioning that domestic tourism and international tourism operate at different level with different means and mode of interaction. Especially when seen in the context of the culture. It is in fact the period of interaction that makes the real difference (Bhardwaj, et al., 1998). In case of international tourism interaction is comparatively for a shorter period with less frequently but with high return capacity. This lures the locals to come out from their cultural hide out to seek economic gains.

The outcome of growing tourism cannot be considered an isolated phenomenon. It has significant relevance to socio-cultural as well as natural environment of the concerned economy. Unlike the economic aspects of tourism development and its impact socio-cultural impacts cannot be quantified (Bhardwaj, et al., 1998).


5.3.4 Technological Like all other industries, the tourism industry is also influenced by the growth in popularity of the internet and e-commerce. Interested travellers are able to find the relevant information related to popular destinations, accommodation, available flights etc. without much hassle. Further e-commerce has enabled easy online payment and tourists can book for holiday packages and arrange everything using the internet from their homes. According to WTO (Cited in Kim, 2004), the Internet is revolutionising the distribution of tourism information and sales. An increasing proportion of Internet users are buying online and tourism will gain a larger and larger share of the online commerce market.

In the last few decades, Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) have deeply affected the way business is performed and the way that organisations compete (Porter, 2001). The tourism and travel industries were particularly affected by these developments and in particular, the way organisations distributed their tourism products in the marketplace (Buhalis, 2000b). Traditionally, the travel distribution role has been performed by outbound travel agencies, tour operators (TOs) and inbound travel agents or handling agencies (Buhalis & Laws, 2001). They were supported by computer reservation systems, global distribution systems or tour operators videotext systems (leisure travel networks) (K.archer, 1997).

5.3.5 Legal There are no particular legal barriers for domestic tourists travelling within the country in India. However for any foreign tourists travelling to India requires visa, although it is

relatively easy and cheap process. For example tourists from UK travelling to India can apply

for visa by post. A Sunday Times travel expert responds: The Indian High Commission outsourced its visa service in the summer after years of complaints about having to queue for hours. They have appointed a reputable company called VF Services, which has offices in London, Birmingham and Edinburgh. Tourists willing to travel to India requires to fill in an online form and submit and they will be given a date to attend. It normally takes two to three days before tourists can return to collect their passport in the afternoon. It costs 30 pounds plus 8.86 pounds handling charge from VFS (Times online, 2008).

5.4 Summary To summarise the external analysis of Gujarat, has relatively good strengths and opportunities require to be establishing as a sustainable spiritual destination. However there are weaknesses and threats to work on, an especially competition from other states like Kerala which have already established itself a unique tourism destination both in domestic and internal market.

The state government is taking significant steps to promote tourism both domestic and globally. Gujarat tourism has a good descriptive web site. On the web site there is information about place, activities, and hotels. It is easy to navigate the web site which has all the required information one needs to visit Gujarat. However it lacks any legal aspects of information like visa requirements for foreign travellers. According to the researcher, this is one of the key aspects Gujarat tourism ministry which should mention any legal requirements to visit Gujarat especially for foreign tourist as it is mentioned in the Gujarat tourism annual report foreign tourist spend relatively more money than domestic tourist.


Chapter Six Conclusion

6.1 Conclusion

Since spiritual tourism development is recent and locally managed, the involvement of local people is high. Most of the sites of Gujarat have their own traditional importance and place in history. Some of them are known for the beautiful temples, mosques, churches and some for their scenic beauty and environment. Each site has a speciality of its own, which cannot be duplicated.

One of the key themes that emerge from the research on Spiritual tourism in this study is that the journey towards meaning seeking holiday is far more important than the destination. The destination in Spiritual tourism is often an alternative space in which one can engage in self analysis without the stresses and distractions of home. The addition of a supportive, likeminded community can sometimes help to further encourage the individual on a journey of self-discovery. Arguably all spiritual tourists are self-aware, active seekers of enhanced wellbeing, health and happiness. Of course, spirituality is not a static concept and is subjective and relative, thus always in flux. The needs of spiritual tourists will clearly vary enormously at different times and stages of their lives. The current diversification of this sector is, therefore, a welcome development and one which is worthy of close observation and dedicated research.

Smith and Kelly (2006a) conclude that, as with other specialist tourism interests, spiritual tourism faces challenges related to authenticity, practice, regulation and management, as well as definition problems and categorisation challenges. Consumers and the industry alike currently experience confusion as to what spiritual tourism is. In the short term, its true

meaning is unlikely to become any clearer, as spirituality becomes a commercial buzzword, and hotels get into the business. They caution that finding a balance between provisions of care, economic development, and meeting the needs of a diverse set of consumers in an erratic world will prove an enormous challenge.

In addition to the conclusion, the findings from the destination audit of Gujarat were very interesting and worth looking at. Gujarat is relatively new destination to be explored and therefore could be a novel attraction to spiritual tourists. Noticeable numbers of attractions and activities require to be established as potential sustainable spiritual destinations and also a noticeable good number of supporting objects like accommodation, ancillary services and significantly improving infrastructure.

The potential of developing Gujarat as a spiritual tourism destination on both domestic and international market can be definitely seen by this research. However the researcher analysed that Gujarat lacks an appropriate method of marketing and promoting the whole region as a destination. During the research it was noticed that Gujarat tourism as a product lacks visibility on the market in both domestic and international market. The evidence of these can be found on TGCL annual report as in terms of numbers there were over 200,000 foreign visitors in year 2006-07, however in terms of percentage share they accounted for only 2percent of total tourists in Gujarat. The same as for tourists from other state they accounted for 21 percent of total tourists in Gujarat. This means is majority of tourists business state has is within the state which accounts for 77 percent of total tourists (TCGL, 2009).


6.2 Recommendations for future research The study of Spiritual tourism in this dissertation could be used as a framework for using multiple methods to empirically examine the potential for branding India or the state of Gujarat as a sustainable spiritual destination. First, in depth qualitative interviews with a small purposive sample of people who have an expressed interest in spirituality could be conducted to explore the motivations for such travel and to investigate how the various components of leisure style, activity, setting and timeare conducive to spiritual tour. In addition, the questions used in these interviews could be designed to determine the processes that connect peoples leisure with their spiritual well-being. A large-scale quantitative study could also be designed to analyze the relationships between the various dimensions of leisure style and spiritual well-being, and the processes linking them. A survey questionnaire could be distributed that included scales that measured leisure activity participation, leisure motivation, leisure settings and leisure time as well as spiritual well-being. A leisure-spiritual processes scale, developed from the literature and a qualitative study, could be developed to determine the spiritual functions of leisure, or the ways in which people use leisure to achieve spiritual well-being.

Correlation analysis could be used to determine if there are significant relationships between the various elements of the model, i.e., the dimensions of leisure style (activity, motivation, setting and time), leisure-spiritual processes and spiritual well-being. Regression analysis could be used to determine which leisure style components contribute the most to spiritual wellbeing. Cluster analysis could be used to investigate whether certain leisure characteristics and styles are more conducive to spiritual well-being than other leisure characteristics and styles. More sophisticated analyses, such as path analysis and structural equation modelling, could be


used to develop a comprehensive empirical model of leisure style and spiritual well-being that illustrates the relationships between leisure style components, leisure-spiritual processes and spiritual wellbeing.

6.2.1 Recommendations for Gujarat The main objective for developing spiritual tourism in India: Gujarat is to promote the rich cultural heritage, environment and spiritual offering. The strategies involved for sustainability of rural tourism projects should also include aggressive marketing strategies. There is potential demand for spiritual tourism in India, as modern day tourists are keen to explore and experience a true authentic meaning when seeking a holiday. Gujarat being a destination with rich cultural diversity will always attract tourists; particularly the foreign tourists who cherish the local beauty, diversity, heritage, culture, and handicrafts. Aggressive marketing is required to promote each destination of Spiritual tourism based on its uniqueness. In order to achieve this appropriate co-ordination among different implementing departments and agencies, both from the government and private is necessary.


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8.0 List of Tables

No Table 1 Table 2 Table 3 Table 4 Table 5 Table 6 Table 7 Table 8 Table 9 Table 10 Table 11 Table 12 Table 13 Table
Assessment schematic Distinctions between qualitative and qualitative data Spiritual tourism characteristics Authentic tourism characteristics Literature review matrix 6As frame work for the analysis of tourism destination FTA in India Domestic tourism market share in India Purpose of Tourism flow Tourist attraction Gujarat Heritage properties, star hotels and resorts for tourists in Gujarat SWOT Analysis of Gujarat A tour plan of Gujarat

Page No
10 14 21 29 33 38 43 44 48 50 55 64 71


9.0 List of Figures

No Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure Inductive Vs Deductive Map of India Location of Gujarat in India Tourists origin (2006-07) Tourism life cycle SWOT analysis frame work Page No 15 40 45 47 61 62


10.0 List of Appendix

Appendix 1: Temple Tour of Gujarat (Ex - Ahmedabad)
8 days from Rs.21390 Prices are per person and reflect land cost only INCLUSIONS Accommodation on twin sharing basis Daily breakfast at all places Transfers & sightseeing by AC car as per the itinerary All luxury taxes at hotels as on date. Any future levies will be charged extra

ACCOMMODATION & PRICING Single Occupancy Twin Triple Child Sharing Basis Sharing Basis With Bed Valid from : October 1, 2009 - March 31, 2010 Deluxe Category Rs.21390 Rs.16695 Rs.7310 Child Without Bed (5-12 yrs)



All above rates are per person on twin share basis in Indian Rupees Note: 2.58% Govt. service tax extra on total billing HOTELS ENVISAGED City Ahmedabad Gondal Somnath Dwaraka Rajkot ITINERARY Day 1 Activities Arrive Ahmedabad On arrival at the Ahmedabad airport or railway station (on your own), you will be transferred to your hotel for a stay of two nights. In the afternoon you will proceed on a city tour of Ahmedabad visiting Gandhi Ashram, Calico museum, Utensils Museum, the Jami Mosque and finally visit Akshardham - dedicated to Lord Swaminarayan. In Ahmedabad - Day excursion to Modhera sun Temple & Patan This morning after breakfast proceed on an excursion to the Sun Temple at Modhera that dates back to the early 11th century. This temple has been designed in such a way that the Sun's rays illuminate the sanctum at dawn, during the time of the equinoxes. Enroute visit Patan that has over 100 Jain temples; the most important being the Mahavir Swami Derasar in Dhandherwad with exquisitely carved wooden dome and the other being the Rani ki Vav is an excellent example of subterranean architecture of Gujarat. Overnight in Ahmedabad. On to Gondal (approx. 265 kms / approx 6 hour drive) This morning you will proceed on drive to Gondal. On arrival you will visit the Orchard Palace Retreat, the Virpur Jalaram Bapa Temple, Naulakha Palace, the Royal Palace and the Veri Lake that attracts cranes, pelicans, flamingoes, spoonbills, and glossy ibises. Harriers roost here in winter and floricans nest in monsoon. Later you will check in to your Nights 2 1 1 2 1 Hotels Deluxe Sarovar Portico or similar Orchard palace or similar Safari resort or similar Dwaraka Residency or similar Grand Regency or similar


hotel for a stay of one night. On to Somnath (approx 155 kms / approx 4 hour drive) After breakfast you will drive to Somnath located on the extreme southwest coast of Gujarat. On arrival you will proceed on a visit to the temple of Somnath, which is established as one of the twelve Siva Jyotirlingas. The present temple has a tower over 50m (165 ft) high over the main sanctum (altar). Imp: The main aarti's are at 7 am, noon, and 7 pm. It is a popular temple. Non-Hindus are permitted to enter. Later you will check in to your hotel for a stay of one night. On to Dwarka (approx 230 kms / approx 6 hour drive) This morning, following breakfast you will drive to Dwarka, en route visiting Kirti Mandir at Porbander, a hometown of Mahatma Gandhi. Continue on drive to Dwarka where on arrival you will check in to your hotel for a stay of two nights. In Dwarka Today, you will enjoy a full day temple visit in Dwarka and excursion to Bet Dwarka. Visit the temple of Dwarkadheesh and the temple of Rukmini, Lord Krishna's wife. Later take a ferry to Shankhoddar Island, also known as Bet Dwarka to visit the temple of Ranchhodrai and the Matsyavatar Temple. Your tour ends with a visit to the temple of Nageshwar Mahadev, one of the 12 jyotirlingas. Overnight in Dwarka. On to Rajkot (approx 235 kms / 4 - 5 hour drive) This morning, following breakfast you will drive to Rajkot. In the afternoon you will visit the temples, the Watson Museum, Kaba Gandhi no Delo - the house where Gandhiji grew up and Bhomeshvar Temple. Rajkot is also famous for its Bandhani Sarees, mirror-work, patch work, bead work, jewellery market and silk embroidery. Later you will check in to your hotel for a stay of one night. Depart Rajkot Morning you will be transferred to the railway station for journey to onward destination.

TERMS & CONDITIONS Validity : October 1, 2009 - March 31, 2010 All above rates are per person on twin share basis in Indian Rupees Not valid for travel during High Season of Dusshera, Deepawali, and Christmas & New Year General Information: o All domestic Hotels/Transport rates are based on current tariff & subject to change without prior notification; the revised rates will be charged extra. All arrangements made by TCIL are in the capacity of an agent only. TCIL will not be liable for claims or expenses arising from circumstances beyond our control such as accidents, injuries, delayed or cancelled flights & acts of force majuere. Payment: o 20% advance payment at the time of registration and balance 20 days prior to departure. Cancellation Policy: All cancellations are to be communicated in writing and will attract a sum of Rs. 1500.00 minimum. Besides the forfeiture of the deposit amount of the tour, a further charge will be levied as follows: o 20 days prior departure: 20% of total tour cost o 7 days prior departure :50% of total tour cost o With in 7 days : 100% of total tour cost Cost Excludes : o ASI & entrance fees for all monuments / sightseeing places o Any air/train fare o Items of a personal nature -i.e. drinks, laundry, tips & gratuities, still/video camera fees at monuments or any items not specified under inclusions.