This Indian airport is an engineering masterpiece.
Pakyong Airport in Sikkim is carved out of the Himalayan mountain side.
Engineers had to brave seismic terrain and monsoon rains. And haul heavy
materials up narrow mountain roads. They also had to build one of the world’s
tallest reinforced soil walls to make the site stable enough for a 1700-meter
runway 1370-meters above sea level. It’s India’s 100th airport-and
one of it’s highest. Sikkim hopes it will bring more tourists to it’s lakes,
mountains and glaciers, enjoying breathtaking view as they land on the soil of
India’s aviation industry is growing rapidly. And
could become the world’s largest domestic civil aviation market in the next
ten-fifteen years. India’s tourism industry is also growing fast. India has done
quite a lot in recent years to grow its travel and tourism industry. This is
clear from the improvements in 2017 ‘Travel of Tourism Competitiveness Report’,
in which India has risen from 65th position in 2013 to 40th
in this year’s edition. Today, India is one of the fastest growing aviation
markets in the world. But, there is still much more that could be done. In
carrying out the research for their new report, “Incredible India 2.0 – India’s
$20 Billion Tourism Opportunity”, Bain & Company undertook set out a
detailed research to demonstrate the monetary opportunities available if India
was to invest in and prioritize it’s aviation, travel and tourism industry.
To complement the holistic approach at the national
level, India should also have a state-level approach with a proposal to create
a pilot project in a state which has traditionally welcomed fewer international
visitors, and to develop a few of it’s destinations via public-private
The future of both India, and especially it’s
travel and tourism industry, is bright if it continues to focus on it’s
opportunities and address its current limitations.