Heritage Tourism - DOT-Maharashtra Tourism

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Heritage Tourism


Heritage tourism helps to learn and understand the cultural heritage of the place, promoting cultural exchange,facilitating harmony and understanding between people. Heritage tourism not only reinforces identity but helps to preserve and to conserve cultural heritage. Thus creates a positive impact on the social and economic standards of the place.

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What Is It?

Any place is defined by its culture and its heritage makes it unique. Traveling to soak the place, listen to the glorious stories of past and present, seeing the lustrous art, understand and participate in traditions, try out the local cuisine, get amazed at the rich history, heritage tourism help connect you to the place like nothing else. Heritage tourism is as diverse as its heritage itself and includes a tangible and intangible heritage. The customs, traditions, beliefs, languages, religion, built architecture, paintings, culinary, folk and fine art, cinema, all are a part of the heritage and, one can explore any facet of the same while traveling to the place.


A land of long undaunting history dating back to the 4th century BCE with powerful rulers and invaders, Maharashtra or the Great Nation, has a rich traditional heritage featuring different styles of architecture, different forms of art, traditions, beliefs and social practices. Maharashtra’s rich heritage is reflected in its 5 UNESCO world heritage sites of Ellora caves in Aurangabad district which is a complex of massive rock-cut architecture. There are 34 monasteries and temples. Kailasa temple is located in this complex. Ajanta caves in Aurangabad district is home to 29 caves. Elephanta caves located on an island close to Mumbai is home to Lord Shiva with a total of 7 caves. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus, Mumbai, is one of the best examples of Victorian Gothic Revival style architecture located in Mumbai. Victorian and Art Deco Ensemble of Mumbai with 19th century Victorian Neo-Gothic public buildings and 20th century Art Deco buildings around Oval maidan. Another form of architecture which the state is proud of is its forts. There are 400+ forts in Maharashtra. Climb a fort to learn about its rulers and conquerors. Trek the mountain ranges of Sahyadri, walk in the parks of Sanjay Gandhi, spot a tiger in Tadoba, enjoy the waves lashing at Konkan, visit the pilgrim centers of Shirdi, Ashtavinayak, get amazed by the grace of Lavani and swift movement of Koli songs, listen to the stories of Hindu Rajya under the great leader Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, participate in the fairs and festivals of the Rashtra like Ganpati celebrations, Gudi Padwa, Elephanta Festival, Ellora Festival etc. The list of heritage experiences is never-ending in Maharashtra, and a single trip of the state isn’t going to be enough.

Uses To Tourists / People

Tourists visit more than one of the heritage attractions while they stay in the place as it makes it more memorable. This form of tourism helps understand a place better, and tourists can connect better. It fosters cultural tolerance.

How It Benefits The Community / Tourists

The money spent by cultural travelers has a very positive repercussion to the financial state of the place. It helps create jobs in various sectors such as the hotel and catering industry, trade and culture. Heritage tourism helps converse artistic, cultural and built heritage, increasing the standard of living of the local community. The heritage tourists put back money into the community. Indeed, Heritage tourism needs to collaborate with local organizations to develop sustainable economies. Newer business opportunities are created, and the quality of life of local communities improves. Heritage tourism promotes a sense of pride in the communities


The variety of heritage tourism opportunities that the state offers are listed under: Fort tourism where you can visit the popular Raigad, Shivneri, Pratapgarh, Sindhudurg to name a few. Listen to the stories of its builders and conquerors as you climb on top of the fort. Cave tourism chooses from the beautiful rock-cut caves across the state. Heritage walks are offered in the cities of Mumbai and Pune covering the beautifully built architectural wonders of the city. Festival visits, come during a major festival and get enamoured by the grandeur of celebration. Pilgrimages, where one can visit a temple or a group of temples like Shirdi or Ashtavinayak comprising 8 Ganpati temples. Maharashtra offers unique, enthralling heritage and cultural experiences.