Himachal profits from Kashmir tourist overflow

Shimla/Manali, May 28 - No bookings in the Kashmir Valley? Head for the hills of Himachal Pradesh for your vacation.

The hospitality industry here says that with hotels in Srinagar valley chock-a-block full, tourists are finding their way to the serene hills of Himachal Pradesh.

"We are feeling relieved, as our worst fears of losing tourists to Srinagar is now proving to be untrue," D. P. Bhatia of Clarke's Hotel in Shimla told IANS.

He said that from May 20, there had been a sharp increase in tourists to Shimla and nearby destinations.

Growth in Cuba private sector restaurants, lodging

Havana, May 11 - Cuba currently has 1,618 restaurants and 5,207 lodgings within the non-state-run sector after the reforms implemented by the government of Raul Castro to increase the scope for private enterprise, the official daily Juventud Rebelde reported Thursday.

Tourism Minister Manuel Marrero said that "the majority (of those facilities) are competitive products of high quality and complement the supply that the country places at the disposition of travellers".

Moscow hotels most expensive in Europe

Moscow, March 24 - The Russian capital remains the city with the most expensive hotels in Europe despite a decrease in prices from 2011, a prominent hotel booking service said.

Travellers had to shell out an average of 7,227 rubles (around $250) for one night's stay in Moscow in February, according to Hotel. info.

The runner-up, Oslo, averaged 6,334 rubles ($216) per night, while hotel rooms in London, which came third, cost 6,236 rubles ($212), the service said in a survey.

Go kayaking, wall climbing at Indian 'activotel'!

Rishikesh (Uttarakhand), Feb 24 - There are 'ecotels' and 'boutique' hotels, but ever heard of the 'activotel'? For those seeking an active, adventurous vacation - and not wanting to wake up late or sip a cocktail with lunch - this is it.

Indian-origin British hotelier sued by parents

London, Feb 23 - Parents of a 60-year-old Indian-origin hotelier, reportedly one of Britain's wealthiest men, are sueing him for 100 million pounds (around $157 million), claiming their son took the family business for himself. Jasminder Singh, chairman of the Radisson Edwardian Hotels, is accused of renouncing the Sikh tradition of sharing family wealth and barring his parents from their multi-million pound business, the Daily Express reported.

His 84-year-old father, Bal Mohinder Singh, stands to take a third of the family fortune if he wins the high court battle against his son.

Tourists throng Kashmir to witness fresh spell of snow

Srinagar, Feb. 21 : Following a fresh spell of snowfall, tourists have converged in large numbers in Pahalgam to enjoy adventure sports like horse riding and skiing.

Located in the southeast of the Kashmir Valley, Pahalgam is surrounded by lofty mountains and is washed by gushing streams and rivulets making it a perfect tourist spot.

Many tourists were left awestruck by the picturesque locales, as the fresh spell of snowfall enthralled them.

Emergency crew takes four hours to locate lost Indian tourist in Queensland

Sydney, Feb 18 : It took four hours for an emergency crew to find an Indian tourist, who had lost his way and ended up on an isolated dark road in Queensland, while traveling from Melbourne to Cairns.

The 26-year old tourist informed emergency dispatchers he had hit a tree, did not know where he was and was `afraid of animals'.

A Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) spokesman said crews received the call from the anxious man at 7.09 pm on Friday.

Israeli officials, Goa cops review tourist security

Panaji, Feb 18 A delegation of Israel embassy officials met top Goa Police officials here late Friday along with union home ministry officials to review security arrangements for Israeli tourists in Goa, a police official said.

The police official, declining to be named, said the meeting was a part of a nationwide security review of places in India, including Jewish pockets and Israeli tourist hotspots like Goa, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh. The review came within days of the New Delhi bombing of an Israeli diplomat's car, which left his wife seriously injured.

Kerala best tourist destination, shows survey

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 18 - For the second year running, Kerala has been rated the best tourist destination in the country, according to a survey.

The survey says: "Kerala topping the list is a no-brainer."

The survey was conducted by the Nielsen Company on behalf of the Outlook Traveller magazine.

"The Outlook Survey has come as a big endorsement for Brand Kerala. It will spur us to take it forward with many more new initiatives," said Kerala Tourism Secretary T. K. Manoj Kumar here.

Greek coast guard rescues 17 illegal immigrants in eastern Aegean

Greek coastguard officials rescued 17 illegal immigrants after the boat in which they were travelling capsized off the coast of the eastern Aegean island of Samos Monday.

The immigrants, all males, told officials they had departed from the eastern shores of Turkey before their inflatable boat capsized, throwing them into the rough waters of the Aegean.

Overall, officials said more than 100 illegal immigrants, among them 25 children, were also caught sneaking into the country after arriving on the islands of Lesvos and Samos.