Months after remaining closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic induced lockdown, the tourism industry in Sikkim opened its doors to the visitors from outside the state on Saturday.

With the aim to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the state, the Sikkim government on March 5 banned the entry of foreign tourists and imposed full restrictions on the tourism sector on March 17.

With unlocking of economic activities gradually taking place across the country, the state government on October 1 decided to reopen its border with West Bengal for unrestricted vehicle movement and lifted the odd-even road rationing for public vehicles.

However, from Saturday onwards the Himalayan state is ready to host tourists and the department of tourism and civil aviation has issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) regarding this.

So, if you have any plans to visit the state in the near future, then here are the guidelines you need to follow:

  • In the first phase of the unlock, only domestic tourists and foreign nationals residing in India will be allowed to visit the state
  • Tourists are advised to carry a valid COVID-19 negative certificate issued 72 hours prior to their arrival
  • Tourists are required to register on the Sikkim Tourism web portal detailing tour plans and possess a copy of the “travel card” issued by the state authority
  • Persons above 65 years of age, persons with comorbidities, pregnant women and children below the age of 10 years are advised to either avoid travelling or limit it
  • Social distancing will have to be followed strictly and tourists are required to wear necessary protective gears

Till the filing of this report, Sikkim had recorded 3,279 COVID-19 cases with 2,640 recoveries and 54 deaths.

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