PATNA: With one out of six foreign tourists heading towards Bihar to visit the historical sites, the state has become a favourite to the tourists from abroad.
"One among every six foreign tourists arriving in the country is accepting hospitality of Bihar now," chief minister Nitish Kumar said.
According to reports, Bihar is receiving more holidayers from abroad than Goa which is a hotspot for foreigners due to its beaches.
State tourism minister Sunil Kumar Pintu told PTI that the number of foreign tourists in Bihar is expected to cross 10 lakh this year.
"More than 8.4 lakh foreign tourists visited different historical sites of Bihar from January to August this year," he said.
The footfalls of international tourists were 8.78 lakh in 2011. There is more than ten-fold increase in the number of arrivals of foreign tourists in the state in the last one decade, he said.
Quoting a survey of Union tourism ministry, Pintu said Bihar figured at seventh position among 10 states receiving foreign tourists last year. The states ahead of it were Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and West Bengal.
Bihar has famous Buddhist sites like Bodh Gaya, Nalanda and Vaishali among others.
Pintu said the state has been taking steps to attract more foreign as well domestic tourists in the state.
To draw more tourists to the state, Bihar government organised a road show at Mauritius during an international meet, late last month.
Bihar is taking part in World Travel Market (WTM) 2012 meet from November 5-8 at London. Out of 9 pavilions booked by India, one belongs to Bihar. Pintu said the state would showcase its rich historical background to foreigners during the event.