Sri Lanka is going all out to woo Indian tourists, here’s what to expect

Sri Lanka has seen a record number of Indian tourists visit the island nation. Last year, it clocked in 3.84 lakh Indian travellers. This year, they are looking to lure even more visitors. This is what tourists can expect.

Updated: Jul 11, 2018 10:37:53

Press Trust of India

Some of the most popular destinations in Sri Lanka include Kandy, Colombo and Bentota. (Shutterstock)

Sri Lanka is expecting a healthy growth in the number of Indian tourists arrivals this year, as the island nation is out to woo travellers even from smaller cities. Sri Lanka has seen a substantial growth in tourist arrivals from India last year, with over 3.84 lakh travellers. Currently, India is the number one country in terms of tourist arrivals, followed by China, UK and Germany. Some of the most popular destinations in Sri Lanka include Kandy, Colombo and Bentota.

“However, this year we are targeting 4.50 lakh tourists from India,” said Viranga Bandara, Assistant Director-Marketing, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau. “We mainly get tourists from the metros like Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Chennai... those are the main tourism-generating hubs for Sri Lanka tourism. But we are also targeting smaller cities,” he said.

Upekkha Samaratunga, Minister (Commercial), Sri Lanka High Commission in New Delhi, said that according to Sri Lanka tourism statistics, India ranks number one in terms of inward traffic to the island nation. “We look forward to travellers from India throughout the year, irrespective of the season. Most Indians like to travel short distances on a competitive budget. In that scenario, Sri Lanka has become popular. However, we are also targeting the high-end tourists from various parts of India, including Chandigarh and neighbouring towns like Ludhiana,” said Samaratunga.

About Sri Lankan food, she said that there is a lot of similarity in their cuisine and what is found in parts of south India. “We use a lot of coconut in our preparations, like it is used in south India. Sri Lankan cinnamon, pepper and other products are also quite popular among Indians. Through tourism, we can expand our trade relations, as India is our key trading partner,” she further said.

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First Published: Jul 11, 2018 10:36:00


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