The Design Guideline incorporates a set of instructions aiming to help designers via the consolidation of already existing national design regulations and standards and best international practices in one single document. These sets of instructions are intended to cover the minimum design requirements for tourist accommodation facilities to help designers and builders to create facilities that are functional and aesthetic to tourists, all while leaving space for designers to come up with innovative and creative ideas.
Tourism was one of the fastest growing sectors in Asia and is the third largest foreign exchange earner in Sri Lanka. When the Covid-19 pandemic surfaced in 2020, tourism was the one to face the immediate impact and one of the industries to be strained the most. Sri Lanka first went into lockdown including the airport closure in March 2020 to control the spread of the virus. The tourist arrivals globally fell abruptly for the first time in the history of tourism and came to a complete halt for a period of 10 months till 21st January 2021.
Sri Lanka Convention Bureau (SLCB) is a state institute under the Ministry of Tourism with the prime objective of promoting Sri Lanka as a venue for MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions & Events) activities.
Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), with the support from Market Development Facility (MDF), Australia’s flagship private sector development program, has launched a membership drive to encourage informal sector tourism operators to register with SLTDA. The membership drive was launched recently with a trilingual video series featuring celebrated cricket legend Kumar Sangakkara.
Foreign investment is a key driver of economic growth, as is the revenue generated via tourism. As one of its primary exports, tourism remains Sri Lanka’s calling card to the world. Over the last fifteen months (March 2020-June 2021) the government has attracted over $950 million in investments, dedicated to revitalising the island’s burgeoning tourism sector.
Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority, Ministry of Tourism with the technical and financial assistance of UNDP in Sri Lanka has initiated the National Sustainable Destination Certification (NSDC) scheme to transform 9 chosen destinations in 9 provinces with the best sustainable practices as the 2nd phase of the National Sustainable Tourism Initiative.
As an initiative to uplift the reviving tourism industry in the country, Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority in collaboration with Sri Lanka Institute of Tourism & Hotel Management (SLITHM) have introduced the continuous professional development (CPD) e- learning platform to all registered guides to enhance their knowledge and skills.
Tourism is a key source of export revenues and employment for the Island and Sri Lanka Tourism recognising the potential for the sector, is focused on developing new products, exploring new markets, and positioning Sri Lanka as the ultimate experiential destination. The Authorities further understand that whilst there are emerging opportunities for growth, it is important to recognize the vulnerability of the sector and strategise on mechanisms to champion resilience and sustainability, with the assistance of Global partners such as the World Bank. Sri Lanka’s tourism product is based largely on natural resources, and it would be detrimental to the industry if proper practices and controls are not followed to ensure the sustenance of the sector.
With the tourism sector being one of the most severely impacted industries in Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka Tourism has continued to support the industry stakeholders through a host of measures to help tide over the crisis. In its latest initiative, the tourism authorities have extended the validity period of licenses of all tourism establishments registered with the SLTDA until the 31 st December 2021 with the hope that it will decrease the burden facing tourism establishments presently. The validity of Tourist Guides licenses has also been extended until later on this year.
As Sri Lanka paves the way to restart tourism, fully vaccinated international travellers who have received the second dose of the vaccine 14 days prior to arrival will now be allowed to enter the country without undergoing quarantine.
Keeping the health and wellbeing of industry stakeholders as its foremost priority, Sri Lanka Tourism has once again requested for a vaccination programme to be organised for tourism industry frontline personnel.
Our attention has been drawn to certain social media posts being widely circulated in the public domain where reference is drawn to tourists brought in by certain individuals.The posts referred to are devoid of truth. We note the wide publicity given to such false posts. There is no such request nor approval given. The ability to visit a ‘Tourist Site’ requires the approval of the respective Line Agency. In this case the Wildlife Department. In the event the Line Agency approves only, can Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority grant approval to visit a site. In this regard we have not received any such request to seek approval to visit Yala National Park.
Sri Lanka Tourism will be one of the key sectors highlighted at the upcoming Sri Lanka Investment Forum (SLIF) 2021, the first and largest virtual investor forum in the region scheduled to be held from 7th to 9th June 2021. Opportunities for investments in the tourism sector will be one of the key areas of the forum among 50+ sessions scheduled to reach across two time zones. Sri Lanka Tourism is participating in the forum to promote and position the island as the perfect destination for post-Covid travel and thereby attract foreign direct investors.
Bolagala Floating Agro Tourism Resort in Katana located close to the Negombo tourism hub will be the newest addition to the inventory of unique experiences for tourists visiting Sri Lanka. This is the first-ever floating resort in Sri Lanka created adopting an agro-tourism theme consists of 50 floating cabanas, including 10 GPS tracker equipped cabanas that could freely move around the picturesque lake giving visitors an exceptional experience: floating swimming pool, floating restaurant, main restaurant, pub & karaoke lounge, underwater spa, gym are the main components of the project.
The Chairperson of Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority, Mrs. Kimarli Fernando, has put forward a proposal to provide vaccinations for the tourism industry with the hopes of resuming all Sri Lanka tourism activities as normal. The Minister of Tourism Hon. Prasanna Ranathunga has approved this proposition and together with the Ministry of Health a special vaccination program will commence in the coming weeks.