Jharkhand planning to promote ecotourism at scenic Netarhat

The Jharkhand government is set to boost eco and cultural tourism in Netarhat, a picturesque location situated at an altitude of 3,622 feet above sea level in Latehar district. Known as the ‘Queen of Chotanagpur,’ Netarhat is renowned for its lush hills, majestic waterfalls, and captivating scenery, located just 157 km from the state capital Ranchi.

Latehar Deputy Commissioner, Bhor Singh Yadav, stated, “We have plans to promote eco and cultural tourism here and thereby also create employment for locals.” Initiatives include the promotion of homestay programs, allowing tourists to experience living with the tribes. Villagers participating in the homestay program have their homes painted with distinctive tribal colors, cream, and white.

In the first phase, 40 homes in Paseripat are being painted, and in the second phase, 83 houses in Sirsi will undergo the same transformation. All villagers in Paseripat and Sirsi have agreed to join the homestay program. About 100 youth from Netarhat have received hospitality and catering training, contributing to the local tourism infrastructure.

Netarhat’s natural beauty is highlighted in a panoramic video shared by Jharkhand Tourism, featuring lush green forests and a road that winds through pine, bamboo, mahua, palash, and saal trees. Latehar District Tourism Officer, Shivendra Singh, emphasized the unique culture and lifestyle of the tribal communities in Netarhat, showcasing their distinct language, culture, and love for nature in various aspects of life.

Major attractions in Netarhat include Koyal View Point (Sunrise Point), Magnolia Point (Sunset Point), Lower Ghaghri and Upper Ghaghri, Netarhat Dam, Netarhat Residential School, pear and apple gardens, pine forests, and Lodh Falls, the highest waterfall in Jharkhand. The area also has a suicide point with a statue commemorating the folklore of an English girl named Magnolia.

Jharkhand, with its diverse natural gifts, has witnessed a steady increase in tourist inflow over the years. The annual tourist count reached over 3.50 crore in 2019-20, including 1.75 lakh foreign visitors. Plans for skywalk and ropeway projects are in the pipeline for destinations such as Patratu in Ramgarh district, Netarhat in Latehar, and Hundru, Jonha, and Dassam falls in Ranchi district. The recently unveiled Tourism policy includes fiscal incentives to encourage investment in tourism facilities, further boosting the sector and attracting visitors to the state.