Kumarakom: The KTDC has hiked the entry fee to the Kumarakom bird sanctuary. Now, the domestic tourists have to pay an entry fee of Rs 100 per head while it is Rs 250 for foreigners. Earlier, it was Rs 50 and Rs 150 respectively.
The entry fee was hiked two years ago too. However, no changes have been made in the parking charges. The parking charge for cars is Rs 30 and Rs 20 for two wheelers. Tourists often visit the bird sanctuary after enjoying boat ride in the backwaters.
Meanwhile, many complain that the entry fee has been increased without developing the basic infrastructure in the bird sanctuary. Both the watch towers are almost in dilapidated stage. The walk ways too are ruined.
Those in the tourism field say that the fee hike would keep the domestic tourists and the common people in the locality away from enjoying the bird sanctuary.
Migratory birds from different parts of the world flock to the 14-acre bird sanctuary at Kumarakom. Situated on the banks of the Vembanad Lake, it is nothing short of a paradise for bird lovers. It is also an ideal locale for leisurely walks and short picnics.
The entry gate of the Kumarakom bird sanctuary is near the Kavanattinkara bridge. The road, which starts from near the canal, along which tourist boats conduct service, ends at the Waterscapes resort of the KTDC. The path that leads to the forest is on the right side. Walk two km along the cobbled path that lies parallel to the banks of the canal, and you reach the lake shore. The woods are home to around 150 species of birds, both migratory as well as local.