March Records 21.3 Per Cent Increase In Tourists Taking Sri Lanka Holidays

March Records 21.3 Per Cent Increase In Tourists Taking Sri Lanka Holidays

The month of March saw a 21.3 per cent increase in visitors to Sri Lanka compared to the same month last year, according to new data released by the country Tourist Board.

The number of travellers who took Sri Lanka holidays in March 2012 reached 91,102 and the majority of visitors originated from Western Europe.

The island nation saw a fall in the number of tourists from South Asian countries compared to March last year with 19,516 arrivals in total.

Last year, Sri Lanka launched a new marketing campaign called efreshingly Sri Lanka ?Visit 2011?in an attempt to encourage international travellers to book holidays to Sri Lanka. The efforts paid off and by the end of the year as the island recorded over 850,000 visitors.

Since the end of the 25-year-long civil war in 2009, the country has received a boost in the number of tourists taking holidays in Sri Lanka as international holidaymakers regain confidence in safe travel on the island.

The first quarter of 2011 saw 215,124 tourists visit the nation and the number of tourists who took a holiday or business trip in Sri Lanka during the first three months of 2012 was recorded at 260,525; a 21.1 per cent increase.

Sri Lanka is well known for its beautiful natural landscapes and diverse ecosystems which are made up of miles of unspoilt sandy beaches, soaring mountains, wildlife sanctuaries, lush nature parks, and a collection of heritage sites that include ancient cities and colonial forts.

Several new Sri Lanka hotels and resorts are under development in regions all across the country and many international brands are looking to invest in the nation tourism industry. These include Taj Hotels Resorts & Palaces, Menpick Hotels & Resorts, Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, and John Keells Hotels Group.

Many coastal regions such as Pasikuda on the east coast of the island are being revamped to become leading tourist destinations. Once a thriving tourist resort, the area of Pasikuda was desolate during the civil war but the government is now investing Rs. 650 million towards the development of the 150-acre Pasikuda Tourist Zone.

Tourism officials are expecting to receive over one million visitor arrivals in Sri Lanka by the end of 2012.

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