The little known Aurwatand waterfall, ensconced in the dense forests of Chandauli district, will soon get its place in the sun.
The Uttar Pradesh government is planning to develop it as an eco-tourism hotspot.
The Aurwatand waterfall on the Karmanasa river in the dense forest with rock paintings that dates to prehistoric era, is a beautiful ecotourism site on the Vindhya circuit.
However, this waterfall, about 25 km from the Rajdari-Devdari waterfalls, has remained undeveloped and unpublicised for decades.
Not many in Uttar Pradesh are aware of the existence of this tourist place in Chandauli, the bordering district of Varanasi, which has a great potential of ecotourism with natural waterfalls, rare prehistoric rock paintings and other natural beauty.
To enhance the tourism potential of Aurwatand, the Chandauli administration has sent a proposal of Rs 2 crore to the state government.
Isha Duhan, district magistrate of Chandauli, said, “There are many places of natural beauty in Chandauli which are important from the point of view of tourism. A proposal of Rs 2 crore has been sent to the government to develop Aurwatand as an eco-tourism spot.”
She said that Aurwatand is surrounded by natural valleys on three sides and has rare prehistoric rock paintings around the waterfall that drops from about 200-ft height.
In order to develop this area as a tourist destination with eco-friendly local products and technology, care has also been taken in the proposal to increase the local economy.
Nature photography can be done here along with the site-seeing from the scaffolding. Besides, there will be rock climbing, zip line, low rope course, commando net wall, tire net wall, etc., for adventure tourism.
The main features include construction of administrative building using local material and technology, construction of grand entrance gate with local stones, shops made of bamboo for sale of local products, wood railing from saugan timber, parking, signage with complete information of the area, sandstone benches and landscaping to enhance the beauty of the area.
The ancient city of Varanasi, which is a centre of pilgrimage and tourism, also offers a thrilling journey for its visitors in surrounding districts like Chandauli, Mirzapur and Sonbhadra, which have many tourist destinations full of natural beauty as well as adventurous trails.
The Chandra Prabha wildlife sanctuary in Chandauli district is one of the sanctuaries which shows the great scenery of nature.
Endowed with beautiful picnic spots, dense forest and scenic waterfalls, it was once a habitat of Asiatic Lions.
The waterfalls like Rajdari and Devdari add great charm to the lush green environment of the sanctuary during the rainy season. With many caves and mountains, it is an ideal destination for adventure travel.
In neighbouring Mirzapur, the Vindhyachal corridor, one of the dream projects of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, is also being developed on the lines of Varanasi’s Shri Kashi Vishwanath Dham.
Besides, Chunar in Mirzapur, about 40 km from Varanasi, has the imposing Chunar Fort along the Ganga.
The forests in the Vindhya ranges along the Ganga are ideal for a day’s trek.
The Sonbhadra district is known for its Fossil Park, which has 150 crore-year-old fossils located in Salkhanarea.
The park, spread over 25 hectares, is near Kaimur Wildlife Sanctuary and situated at a distance of about 16 km from Robertsganj, the headquarters of Sonbhadra.
The region, in the past several decades, has been ignored by the governments and very few efforts have been made to develop the region as a tourist spot even though it has immense potential.
With the focus now on Aurwatand waterfalls, the region is all set to become a tourist hotspot.