An unprecedented increase of tourists from the pocket-sized Baltic nation to Sri Lanka, a growth of more than 30% per year to a destination long been unheard of among Lithuanians, is indeed a notable narration. Moreover, this remarkable achievement has revived prospects for Lithuania-Sri Lanka relations.
Sri Lanka is fast growing as a popular tourist destination among Lithuanian travellers. The Pearl of the Indian Ocean has already achieved substantial growth in tourism in the past few years, especially among European tourists. However, the popularity of Sri Lanka as a tourist destination among Lithuanians was in a relatively modest stage for many years. The Honorary Consulate of Lithuania in Sri Lanka, in the last two years has taken necessary steps to uplift this deficit through various projects and plans re-branding Sri Lanka as a top tourist destination among Lithuanians.
The Consulate is extremely pleased to announce that these immense efforts are gradually yielding expected results. In 2013 and 2014, the Lithuanian travellers to Sri Lanka were 1405 and 1858 respectively, a growth of 32.2%. And from 2015 to 2016, the growth was 34.5%, with the total topping at 2,372 tourists in 2016.
From January to June 2017, the arrivals have depicted a 31.2% growth compared to the same period in 2016. So far in 2017, 1442 Lithuanian tourists have visited the paradise island and it is expected to grow higher closer to November and December due to the extreme winters in Lithuania. The growth in the past two years is truly significant, considering the fact that Lithuania is a tiny nation with a mere population of 2.8 million.
Many destinations in Sri Lanka are popular among young Lithuanians, especially enthusiasts in adventure, water sports, and hiking. Many Lithuanians tourists are backpackers who travel around Sri Lanka, relishing the beauty of the island.
Kanchana Kodituwakku, Communications Director of the Lithuanian Consulate in Sri Lanka stated, “This momentous makeover has complimented with the progressive growth of Sri Lankans travelling to Lithuania. Many Sri Lankans travel to Lithuania for tourism, medication, higher studies, investment and jobs. The unique feature of Lithuania to attract Sri Lankans has been chiefly centred on the relatively less cost with high living standards among its European counterparts. Lithuania is ranked among the top countries in Europe for affordable travelling, quality higher education, excellent investment climate and high standards of ICT, Research and Development. In 2016, Lithuania was ranked as the country with the fastest public Wi-Fi in the world.”
The Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Lithuania in Sri Lanka will continue to promote tourism, which is a cornerstone in diplomatic, social, political and cultural relations between Sri Lanka and Lithuania.
Source : FT