a VirtualTourist member
I would like to get your opinions on something. My family owns one of the oldest mines in Rajasthan, one of the best soapstone and dolomite mines. Recently we were thinking about opening it to tourists who are interested, as it as a really unique experience. It has never been opened to anyone except for select family before.
It is an established mines, a hundred years old, and picture perfect. There are over 400 people working there, and not one fatality since it started ! It has also won the National Mines Safety Award by the now former President (Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam).
I wanted to know if tourists would be interested to see and experience our mines for a small fee, just to cover our expenses for providing you with a local guide to show you around.
It really is a very different experience, seeing the vast pits unfold before your eyes, hundreds of metres wide, and the way open pit mining is done. The way the mills work, blowing particles of stone to a fine talcum powder. Add a bit of perfume to that, and you have yourself some body powder that you use daily ! Rajasthan is famous for it !
It is away from the city, 7 kilometres before Nathdwara, and easily accesible by car.
Anyone who visits will also be provided with a free sample of the materials we mine ! :)
In all likelihood this will be deleted from this forum, as it breaches the forum guidelines which forbid advertising and solicitation (which are clearly displayed above).
If you genuinely want advice on whether it has potential as a tourist attraction, then post an amended version on this query in the Miscellaneous forum - I can't gaurantee that it don't be deleted from there too, but the chances are lower.
One obvious comment: have you considered the health, safety and reputational implications of having tourists visit active mining areas? This brings a whole new dimension to the risk profile of your operations, since tourists are not as familar with the risks that these areas pose, and obviously you will have to put them through some sort of induction process, as well as issuing them with personal protective equipment. And have you considered the implications for your insurance cover? And what happens to your reputation in the worst case scenario if a visitor is involved in an accident?
Personally I would have throught that the attendant risks far outweigh the potential reward, but that's your call.
Thank you very very much, Catherine. I appreciate it a lot, I'll keep everything in mind.
My pleasure - I manage safety, health, environment, risk & quality for a mining company, so minimising unnecessary risk is second nature!
Catharine's points are helpful. Let me just add that I've lived twice in India, for a total of some 6 years, and (of course) have visited Rajasthan lots of times. I would certainly have considered a vist to your mine - a different experience, as you say. But I doubt very much if it would attract short-term tourists - India has so much more to offer.
Actually this is a fairly unique question, and one, or a variety thereof, I expected to see more of here on VT. Who better to ask such a question than experienced travellers. I see no need to delete this one as it is not advertising, but a genuine question, although regarding marketing, of sorts.
Speaking from the standpoint of a well travelled tour director, many times in Udaipur, a huge favorite of mine, I certainly cvan see a tourist potential there. However I can forsee some problems as mentioned by Cathy above.
This would not be so much different then the Blue Lagoon in my country, as a matter of fact, I would suggest something of the order of some form of spa, where the beauty products produced would be available in a spa setting. If done right, it might attract those people that frequent such facilities anyway.
With that type of a combination, mine tour plus spa experience, I would visit to review if it is something tht my tours would like. I did a lot of five star tours where we stayed at the Shiv Niwas and the Lake Palace.
Good luck with your venture......d:o)