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International rafters term Thathri an ultimate rafting destination in the world
International rafters participating in the five-day-long International River rafting competition at Thathri in Doda district are all praises for the virgin location, and seem to have fallen in love with the rapids of Chenab River.

In order to give fillip to the extreme adventure sports and to boost the inflow of foreign tourists and adventure lovers from all over the world to Jammu and Kashmir, J&K Tourism Department is organising the International River rafting Competition on mighty river Chenab at Thatri Doda, 200km from Jammu.

Natalia from Slovakia, who has been moving around the world for the last fifteen years as racer, organiser and as Judge, is all praises for the beauty of river Chenab and terms Thathri as the ultimate destination for adventure lovers. “It’s a great river for rafting. It has great potential; the landscape is beautiful. This river is ultimate for racing; it’s good for commercial rafting and the tours. I think this can be a great new era for bringing the people from all around India and world,” she said. Her team has also won the European championship.

She expects locals and government to take care of certain things. “We just need to have that clean environment. The people who like rafting, they also like to sleep in the tents and on the river-side. People are not so picky about staying in the hotels; they just want clean rivers to enjoy,” said Natalia, adding, “There can be very nice horse big riding, hiking, kayaking, this is why we all came here because we know this place is beautiful and has all the potential.”

Officials of Jammu and Kashmir Tourism department are all excited about the positive response and feedback they are getting from the international rafting fraternity and the locals. “We are getting overwhelming response and feedback from the captains of international rafting teams. They have been rafting in Africa, Europe, America and Australia, but they informed us that they found this place unique and rarest of the rare.”

“They are of the opinion that if foreigners come here to see the potential of the water sport activity, they will definitely fall in love with the trekking routes,” said assistant director tourism Tariq Niak.

He added that tourism department has already opened two places in Kashmir Valley i.e. Pahalgam and Sonmarg, and Reasi in Jammu but “Thatri is the best among them and we are hopeful that this will pave the way for the influx of foreign tourists here, especially the adventure lovers.”

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