Punjab is known as land of five rivers. Tourism international and domestic offers the best prospects of helping the state and helps in earning substantial amount of revenue for meeting the necessary requirements of state. It has to be recognized that tourism not only generates employment, but also upgrades infrastructure of the state created for tourism, which is then used by all other sectors of economy. Recognizing the importance of tourism and potential of state to attract both domestic and international tourists, the Government has given tourism a special status by declaring it as an industry in Punjab in the year 1996. The state does not have much to offer as far as natural resources are concerned. But state has an excellent infrastructure as compared to other states, which is helpful in attracting tourists. There are several places in Punjab that form an important part of the tourist circuit and these are Amritsar, Jalandhar, Chandigarh, Ropar, Bhatinda, Pathankot, Muktsar, Hoshiarpur, Fatehgarh Sahib, Patiala and Kapurthala. The most important tourist center in the state is Amritsar with its Golden Temple. This temple is considered to be the holiest of all the pilgrimages of Sikhism and houses Akal Takht, the supreme governing body of Sikhism. This site became internationally famous and popular among tourists after being recommended to UNESCO for world heritage monument site. There is no dearth of tourist attractions in Punjab. The tourism product of Punjab is varied and rich in culture and heritage. Punjab has much to offer in terms of culture, heritage, food, festivals, fairs, rural life, local arts & crafts, ancient palaces & monuments, religious places and much more.
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