Promoting cultural tourism is fine. The tourist influx to the cultural heritage sites mounts as does the financial reserve in the state treasury and the tourism department’s coffer flow with cash pouring in. However, a focus of concern concentrates on reconciling two conflicting objectives. Higher the number of tourists visiting the archeological sites for example, higher is the chance of damage done to the environment and the site in particular. The cloud of dust kicked up, the amount of carbon dioxide breathed out and the body toxics pumped into the air can cause irreparable harm to relics, paintings, murals and sculptures. The scale of damage is frightful when linked to a massive tourist influx.
However, the basic which may be a little wishful is that art lovers would be civilized enough not to smoke around digs, monuments and art galleries. If smoking by tourists advents the scene, the disaster is simply multiplied. Stringent actions have to be initiated by site administration in order to put a restraint on smoking tourists. Separate smoking booths to be set up for those poor souls who cannot kick the filthy habit!
Cultural sites and ruins of archeological interest should be attended with meticulous housekeeping. It is always a good practice to give a bath of water spray to keep the dust under acceptable limit. Plantation of greenery in and around ruins would not be a bad idea. However, the feasibility of the project needs a careful survey. Where ruins like ancient brickwork hanging loose with all its wonderful inlays on display may inspire an over enthusiastic art lover to make away with a loose of archeological worth and augment his private collection. Vigilance must be posted at such points in order to check commission of such art inspired theft. Besides, old and unattended ruins pose major accident threats. Proper insurance schemes would cover the cultural sites against pilferage, vandalism and other potential damages. Equally important is organizing a set up for fire fighting, flood control and other natural calamities which may be a menace all on a sudden.
Training tutorials for bringing up efficient and resourceful guides is an initiative drive expected from the department of art and culture. The guide must make his presence felt among tourists. A good and effective training would help the guide achieve the desired trait. In many cultural heritage sites, disparity in the entry tariff is a point of concern. Foreign nationals are charged much higher rates. The discrimination may be a part of the host nation’s economic policy nevertheless, it must not be glaring.
The museums, monuments and archeological ruins should be tourist friendly. Adequate information and literature are a must display requisite to get the tourists updated on the cultural importance of the place of his visit. Accurate information of landmark dates and major historical events along with its cultural significance should be highlighted for the tourist to be acquainted with the site. The importance of site maps and internal route direction cannot be overemphasized as is the need for tree shades.
Transportation arrangements should be comfortable and trouble free as exploration on foot across ruins and archeological digs could be quite long and tiring. Vehicle emissions to be muffled as the smoke would spoil the artwork and pollute the environment.
Money collected from tourist visits should find a constructive way out. It should be exclusively spent on upkeep and restoration of cultural heritage sites and the artwork it encompasses. No diversions to be encouraged. The allocated funds on improving the cultural image of a nation should be earmarked and spent properly for the purpose designed.
Participation by different nations in cultural forums is important. Ideas flow and swap. The methods directed at preservation of museum artifacts, paintings and monuments are discussed. The kind of support from government and the ministry of art and culture would act as a benchmark for nations aspiring to make cultural tourism a prime economic driver.