Film Tourism: The Call of Bollywood
by Eguaogie Eghosa Aug 29, 2021 Views (1.5K)
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While the film has a tremendous impact on people's lifestyles and fashion, it is also one of the most potent promoters of travel.

Films have traditionally been a potent instrument for tourism promotion in a country where people live and breathe Bollywood since the locations featured in blockbuster successes nearly always see a significant increase in tourist arrivals immediately after the films' release. Though this has been going on for decades, it is only in the last few years that the concept has been formalized, and destinations have begun to work with large production houses to ensure that they are included in major projects, and frequently offer financial incentives to be featured in films.

Film tourism, a popular concept in the West, has begun to gain traction in the Indian tourism market, with the goal of attracting both domestic and international visitors. To reference a report released by EY and the Ph.D. Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 2019, film tourism in India has the potential to generate USD3 billion by 2022, with up to 1 million film tourists visiting various parts of the country.

From the unforgettable journey of two friends in the Amir Khan-led 3 Idiots (2009), which led them to the beautiful Pangong lake in Ladakh, to the Royal forts of Rajasthan which has appeared in many iconic films such as Jodha Akbar (2008), Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999), Border (1997), and Goliyon ki Rasleela- Ramleela (2013), the number of tourists visiting these places has increased dramatically.

If tourists are familiar with the film and can recognize the area in the film, they are more likely to visit that location. Shooting a movie in any location boosts its popularity. Shooting a movie in any location boosts its popularity. There has been a significant influence; we saw that before the release of the three idiots, few people knew about Ladakh, but it has since grown in popularity among tourists,” Dharmendra Kumar Verma, Manager, Kumar Taj Mahal Tour, an Agra-based tour and travel firm, told Media India Group.

Other beautiful sites in India that have piqued the interest of both filmmakers and tourists in recent years include:

1. Kashmir
For decades, filmmakers have picked Kashmir's beautiful meadows and snow-capped mountains as the location for shooting legendary songs and films. Over the last seven decades, dozens, if not hundreds, of films have been shot here. From the historic Kashmir Ki Kali (1964), which began Shammi Kapoor's famous love affair with the city, to more modern films like Fitoor (2016) and Haider (2014), the valley has been featured in many films.

Aside from Bollywood films, a flurry of videos portraying the essence of music and singing by some of the Valley's most prolific musical artists have recently been shot. Salim Merchant, a music composer, shot his latest song, Tumhe dekh ke, in Kashmir.

2. Doraha Fort, near Ludhiana
The wonderfully disguised escape, also known as RDB fort, gained recognition after it was used in the iconic sequence where all the lads rush into the field and jump up as the air force jet zooms over them in the famous Bollywood film Rang de Basanti (2006), starring Amir Khan. The fort also serves as the setting for the movie's song Tu Bin Bataye.

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3. Pangong Lake, Ladakh
Kareena Kapoor, dressed in a bright red bridal sari, rides her bike down a tiny strip of white sand. Her lover, Aamir Khan, looks on, a little surprised. They reunite against a backdrop of dazzling blue waves lapping against a swath of frozen mountains. This scene from 3 Idiots sparked widespread interest.

400,000 Indian visitors visited Ladakh in 2008, the year before the film's premiere. Three years later, though, those figures had nearly doubled.

“It happened out of nowhere". In an interview, Mehboob Ali, assistant director of the Tourism Department in Leh, remarked that even Aamir Khan was unsure that Ladakh would receive that much attention.

4. Tea plantations of Munnar, Kerala
Munnar is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Kerala, famed for its green belt of lush woods and endless expanse of tea fields. The hill station, which is full of beautiful valleys, mountains, and diverse species of flora and fauna, is also a popular destination for activities such as trekking and camping. The tea estates of this exotic region have also been featured in blockbuster songs such as Kashmir tu mai Kanyakumari from Chennai Express (2013) and Life of Pi from Life of Pi (2012).

Munnar is really beautiful, both in terms of the weather and the scenery. This is the place to go if you want to get away from the rush and bustle of city life. 

5. Darjeeling
The magnificent hill station, also known as the Queen of Hills, is located in the Kanchenjunga range and has been featured in a number of Bollywood films. From Nasir Hussain's Jab Pyaar Kisi Se Hota Hai (1961), one of the first Bollywood films shot in Darjeeling, to Ranbir Kapoor's Barfi (2012), the story of a hearing-and-speech impaired man (Ranbir Kapoor) and his relationship with the two women in his life, Shruti (Ileana D'Cruz) and Jhilmil (Anushka Sharma), there (Priyanka Chopra Jonas). Ghoom's Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Station, Windamere Hotel, Keventer's, and Planters Club have all appeared in the films.

Bollywood has affected so much of our culture through the years that it is undeniable that it is a trendsetter. Despite the fact that the Covid-19 outbreak has been disastrous for the tourism business, these tourist spots that have been featured in major Bollywood films and are equally enchanting when visited in real life can be part of a variety of activities.

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