Tourism to Sri Lanka is flourishing
The end of internal conflict in Sri Lanka has imparted an impetus to tourism in this island country. According to data available, in the first half of this year 452,867 visitors including 85,000 from India have visited this country situated south of India.
This tourist influx is all time high and an 18.7 percent increase over the same period last year, says a Xinhua report.
According to the reports of the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority said the highest number of tourists -- 172,602 -- in the first six months arrived from Western Europe.
British topped the list of tourists with 47,975, while Germany finished second with 32,081.
In the terms of parentage highest growth was reported from Spain despite low numbers.
The percentage of tourist arrivals from Spain grew by an impressive 89.2 percent from 2,058 in 2011 to 3,894 this year.
116,717 arrivals reported from South Asia.
With 85,426 arrivals in the first half of the year India remained on top in terms of regional travelers.
Maldives also registered a 6.7 percent growth with 20,602 tourists, a monthly bulletin issued by tourism authority says.
Tourists from East Asia grew 36.7 percent from 41,340 in 2011 to 56,497.
The tourist influx from Japan increased by 29.4 percent to 10,203, while China registered 9,622 arrivals posting a 11.7 percent increase from 8,613 in 2011.
To further increase the tourist arrivals the government of Sri Lanka has set an ambitious target of one million arrivals in year 2012, and expects it to reach 2.5 million by 2016. Around $2 billion in earnings are also expected from the tourism industry this year by Sri Lanka government.
--with inputs from IANS
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