Sri Lanka Embassy in Brussels conducted a workshop on reopening of Sri Lanka for international tourism at the Official Residence on 18 November 2021. The objective of the workshop was to convey the message that Sri Lanka was open for tourism in a big scale for the travellers to explore the incredible features and topographies and reconnect with the Belgium tour operators, travel writers and other travel professionals. Around 30 tour operators and agents, travel journalists, travel media and TV professionals, travel bloggers, social media influencers and decision-makers of the Belgium tourism industry attended the event.
Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Belgium Grace Asirwatham who led the Workshop said that Sri Lanka had opened the country once again for world tourism with a hash tag #“Hello Again”; and put in place the necessary precautionary measures to make the island an extremely safe, secure and serene destination for the visitors. Ambassador Asirwatham further explained in detail the current health regulations applicable to travellers, tourism attractions in Sri Lanka and new emerging niche market segments such as wellness and medical tourism, pilgrimage tours, bird watching, kite surfing, whale and dolphin watching, surfing and scuba diving, gastronomy, MICE tourism, honeymoon tours and cruises. Ambassador also highlighted the international accolades received by Sri Lanka as one of the world’s best tourist destinations by world renowned media and travel related institutions.
Honorary Consul of Sri Lanka in Antwerp Monique de Decker and a travel expert from Walkers Tours Ruwan De Alwis made presentations in Flemish and French respectively. A Board Member of Association of Belgian Travel Organizers (ABTO) Paul Ryckaseys shared his experience with the Sri Lanka travel industry and recommended Sri Lanka to Belgian travellers as the most favourable location for holidays. During the workshop the participants showed keen interest in getting more information and interacted with the speakers. The workshop presented Sri Lanka as a small wonder on earth, with diverse natural splendours and grandeurs, golden beaches and many other tourist attractions.
The number of Belgian travellers visiting Sri Lanka is steadily increasing. Around 5300 Belgian travellers visited Sri Lanka in 2010 which has increased to 17,500 in 2018. Despite the Easter Sunday attacks in 2019 around 15,000 Belgian travellers visited Sri Lanka in that year.
Source – Embassy of Sri Lanka Brussels.