Statistics released by Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) for the last year show that over 2 million tourists visited the island in 2016.
According to SLTDA figures, Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals in 2016 rose 14% with the arrival of 2,050,832 tourists compared to the 1,798,380 tourists arrived in 2015.
Most of the tourist arrivals were from Western Europe with 643,333 tourists visiting in 2016 recording a 16.5% increase over corresponding 2015 figures. For the month of December, 68,355 tourists arrived in the island, 9.3% more than in December 2015. Most of the tourists came from UK (188,159), followed by Germany (133,275), and France (96,440). Arrivals from North America rose by 15.8% with 98,376 visitors last year while during the month of December, arrivals rose 8.8% with 12,820 tourists arriving in the country.
Tourist arrivals from Eastern Europe increased in 2016 by 8.6% with the arrival of 161,171 visitors as arrivals from Russia declined by 5.9%.
Tourist arrivals from Middle East increased in the year by 6.5% with the arrival of 107,635 visitors.
Last year, 425,161 East Asians arrived in the island, recording an increase of 17.2%. The number of Chinese tourists arriving in the island rose by 26.4% to reach 271,577. In December, tourist arrivals from China increased by 21.9% with 19,318 Chinese tourists visiting the island.
Arrivals from South Asia, the other region from where most tourists come, increased by 11.8% to record 513,536 arrivals. Indian tourists contributed the most with 356,729 Indians visiting the country, recording a 12.8% increase in numbers.In the past year, 74,496 Australians arrived in the country, a 17.2% increase from the previous year.