Tourism Minister of Tamil Nadu, Dr M Mathiventhan, on Saturday, announced plans to start water sports activities at Chennai’s coastal attraction, Marina Beach. The Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation (TTDC), in collaboration with Royal Madras Yacht Club, will be introducing various water sports, along with boating.
Mathiventhan put forward the proposal during the State assembly meeting, where he demanded grants from the DMK government for his department. Along with the proposal for water sports activities, the minister also pointed at plans to open a floating restaurant on TTDC’s Muttukadu Boat House, located 35 kilometers from the city on East Coast Road.
The restaurant and the water sports activities aim to increase the footfall on Marina beach and the areas in the vicinity. Other efforts to give a boost to the tourism industry include the introduction of other adventure sports like bungee slingshot, rock climbing, zip-lining, and eco-camping sites spanned across Tiruvannamalai district and Vellore.
The Mudhaliarkuppam Boat House will also undergo development at the cost of Rs.50 lakh. The development project, which also includes a cafeteria and beach activities, will be initiated to cater to tourists who show interest in visiting the islet in Odiyur lake.
A similar development project was proposed almost ten years ago that involved setting up a berthing facility for yachts with services like fuel, water, sewage pump-outs, and electricity for boats.
The project mirrored the one done for Kochi International Marina, which started operating in 2010. During the previous proposal, the marina was supposed to be built for 234 yachts, including a base for Tamil Nadu coastal police. However, the project couldn’t reach the initiation stage.
Tourism came to a crippling condition during the pandemic. However, the Tamil Nadu state government is planning to fuel the industry with various leisure services being provided to tourists.