For the first time in Tamil Nadu, the State government plans to set up a floating restaurant at Muttukadu Boat House, located on the East Coast Road between Chennai and Mamallapuram. Floating restaurants are quite famous in neighbouring Kerala's backwaters.

This will encourage more tourists to visit Muttukadu and enjoy the ride in the backwaters, says a government announcement on Tourism in the Assembly on Saturday.

Muttukadu boat house - 36 km south of Chennai - is a water sportst facility offering rowing, windsurfing, water skiing, and speedboat riding. It was inaugurated in 1984 and has 15 rowboats: 27 speedboats and 9 pedal boats, besides two high-speed aqua scooters. The water depth varies between 3 ft and 6 ft. It is owned and operated by the Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation, says information in the public domain.

A feasibility study will also be carried out to introduce luxury shipping and ferry services between tourist cities. Luxury boat cruises are short-term travel by sea with various entertainment features for tourists. Such tours are very popular abroad. A feasibility study for launching a luxury shipping service between Rameshwaram and Kanyakumari, the most visited cities by domestic and foreign tourists, will be carried out, the government said.