Kullu, May 24 : With mercury rising in the plains, people from different parts of the country are flocking to hilly areas to beat the heat.
And, one of the major tourists' draws is Himachal Pradesh's scenic Kullu Valley.
Many tourists throng to Kullu because of its adventure-related pursuits like trekking and white water river rafting.
There are 58 well equipped set ups in Kullu which offer river rafting facilities to tourists.
This year, due to the heavy rush of tourists and other visitors, the rate of occupancy at the hotels in Kullu Valley region has almost touched the optimum level.
Around 5,000 domestic and international tourists from across the country are entertained at various spots across Kullu and offered a gala experience in river rafting.
Children below five years of age are not allowed since rapid travel over gushing waters is considered unsuitable for such tender kids.
"This is my first experience and this river was rough for rafting but our instructor helped us a lot. We performed exciting river rafting and had a unique memorable experience," said Pradesh Vasudevan, one tourist.
The operators of these adventure events provide requisite safety gadgets for tourists like life jackets.
As compared to previous years, this summer has witnessed better business in raft rentals and adventure tourism.
The rafting boats can travel up to seven or fourteen kilometers. The expense for the ride depends upon the time and make of the boats.
"Tourism has increased and over the past one year the rafting business is doing well. Tourists are coming in large numbers to go on river rafting and are feeling good about it," said Dinesh Sharma, one adventure sports operator.
Summer is the best season for this activity as the current of the spring waters is at its peak in this season, for a thrilling experience. By Prem Thakur