MANALI: It sends shivers down the spines if we think about white water rafting on hills in winter months. In the extreme cold weather under sub zero temperature the icy waters of river Beas has been crowded with hundreds of river rafting enthusiasts from across the country.
Although a little wave of freezing cold water sends rafters state of shock, but according to experts, this is the good time for rafting for amateurs as water level is half than that of summers.
According to sources, over 50% of the tourists visiting Manali are trying their hands at rafting at Kullu while returning back home. Many hotels are giving complimentary rafting tickets to the couples. As most of the tourists hesitate in riding the icy river, service providers are offering 50% discount on each ticket to lure them.
For many tourists a life jacket over heavy woolens seems to be odd and useless but the river has claimed many lives in winter season too. So, tourism department has tightened it’s noose on the operators who think of floating the safety rules.
The whole river that is echoing with the thrilling screams of tourists makes good sense that how much tourists are enjoying it.
Sorabh and Ishika Gupta, newlywed couple from Delhi, express their excitement: “It’s already so cold out here and riding the raft on icy cold water was sounding awful feeling at first. When our friends forced us to join them, we ended up thanking them for taking us on the thrilling ride. This is must do activity here.”
Another tourist from Bhopal, Subodh Jain, who is visiting Himachal with his family said: “It was an unforgettable moment for us. A big rapid drenched me and I was shivering with cold. But the excitement of thrill is unexplainable. Children loved it the most.”
To attract more honeymooners to Manali, hoteliers and travel agents are organizing ‘adventure honeymoon’ and they are getting good response. Apart from traditional honeymoon arrangements for couple, adventure activities like river rafting, paragliding, skiing and day hike are also being arranged for them.
Chander Prakash, a raft owner at Kullu, says he is selling 20 to 30 tickets to tourists every day.
“We are having better than the average business. Hundreds of couples are visiting rafting site and majority of them are not able to resist themselves from feeling the enjoyment of floating on icy water.”
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