Sri Lanka to woo greater number of Indian tourists

Sri Lanka’s tourism officers, acutely aware of the dire have to shore up their nation’s financial system, plan to woo a larger variety of Indian vacationers, who represent the only largest phase of overseas vacationers, by new packages such because the Murugan-Shiva Shakthi trails. Their optimism stems from the very fact that there’s a proposal to renew air passenger providers from the Palaly airport in Jaffna to locations within the southern a part of India.

As a part of the Murugan path, two essential locations — Nallur Kandaswamy or Murugan temple in Jaffna of the Northern Province, and Kataragama of the Uva Province within the southeast — have been included.

Referring to the continuing 25-day-long pageant in Nallur (which concludes on August 27), Chalaka Gajabahu, chairman of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, instructed a bunch of journalists from India just lately in Colombo that the pageant was anticipated to attract over 1,000,000 devotees, together with 1,00,000 from the diaspora. A “particular calendar” of occasions was being ready for Hindu devotees.

Selling the North

To a question whether or not the Northern Province can be a daily function within the packages for vacationers, Mr. Gajabahu replied within the affirmative and asserted “we now have been actively selling the North on commerce FAMs [familiarisation trips].” The East too would obtain extra focus in view of its various cultural significance that encompassed Islam. Nonetheless, he conceded that advertising of the North had not been accomplished “a lot.”

The query was raised within the context of protection of Naguleeswaram in Jaffna and Thiruketheeswaram in Mannar, each coming underneath 5 abodes of Lord Shiva in Sri Lanka, within the new Murugan path. The opposite three abodes included Thirukoneeswaram temple, Trincomalee, within the Jap Province, Munneeswaram temple within the north-west and Tondeeshwaram temple, close to Matara, within the south. The path would additionally embody shrines similar to Nagapooshani Amman temple and Nagadeepa Purana Vihara, each in Nainativu, off Jaffna.

Ramayana path

Declaring {that a} Ramayana path had been in place for a few years, the Bureau chief known as for modification within the programme to accommodate a larger variety of youth.

At the same time as Indian vacationers fashioned the largest chunk of overseas vacationers, Mr. Gajabahu emphasised that varied steps had been being taken to draw them extra. Journey tourism, leisure and playing had been a few of the sights being provided by Sri Lanka. His workforce had deliberate to go to Indian cities in September similar to Mumbai and New Delhi for the aim of promotion.

On the general goal for overseas vacationers, the Bureau chief mentioned they hope to draw 8.5 lakh to 10 lakh vacationers (1 million) this 12 months. Nonetheless, the goal was to get again to the 2018 tally of two.1 million, because the tourism sector had been hit badly following the 2019 Easter Sunday assaults and the COVID-19 pandemic. “For the subsequent six months to at least one 12 months, we wish to create a constructive image about Sri Lanka. Refreshening, positioning and taking it ahead will probably be our features,” Mr. Gajabahu noticed, including that until July, about 4.5 lakh overseas vacationers had arrived this 12 months.

Welcoming the tourism authorities’ initiative, Selvaretnam Raghavan, president of the Thiruketheeswaram Temple Restoration Society, says the brand new path will carry in additional devotees to the temple too, which was consecrated on July 6. He provides that the temple, which was broken through the civil conflict, was renovated at a complete value of LKR 900 million which included LKR 320 million from the Indian authorities.

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