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SRI LANKA - THE PEARL OF INDIAN OCEAN

At a Glance Set in the Indian Ocean in South Asia, the tropical island nation of Sri Lanka has a history dating back to  the birth of time.  It is a place where the original soul of Buddhism still flourishes and where nature’s  beauty remains abundant and unspoilt.  Few places in the world can offer the traveller such a remarkable combination of stunning landscapes,  pristine beaches, captivating cultural heritage and unique experiences within such a compact location.   Within a mere area of  65,610 kilometres lie 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 1,330 kilometres of  coastline - much of it pristine beach - 15 national parks showcasing an abundance of wildlife, nearly  500,000 acres of lush tea estates, 250 acres of botanical gardens, 350 waterfalls, 25,000 water bodies,  to a culture that extends back to over 2,500 years.   This is an island of magical proportions, once known as Serendib, Taprobane, the Pearl of the Indian  Ocean, and Ceylon. Discover refreshingly Sri Lanka!  Heritage Sri Lanka, the natures treasure chest is the home to one of the oldest civilizations in the world. Sri  Lanka’s written history exceeds 2550 years. Its pre-history consist of planned cities, magnificent  palaces, and expansive man made reservoirs, stunning temples and monasteries, green gardens, hard  to believe monuments and works of art are characteristic of the rich and jubilant lives the celebrated  monarchy of Sri Lanka lived. Sri Lanka is one of the most delightful destinations in the world to visit.  Sri Lanka Rising With the end of the three decade long war Sri Lanka is seeing a sudden burst in infrastructure  development and a new Sri Lanka rising. Today post-war Sri Lanka is seeing a rapid and wide spread  infrastructure development within rural and urban areas as never seen in the country before. The island-  wide road development program is at the center of this effort.  The improved CONNECTIVITY enabled  by road development, particularly rural roads, generates significant economic and social returns. It is  having a transformative impact on the lives of people around the country. The completion of the highway  network (commencing with the Southern Highway, Katunayake Expressway and Colombo Ring Road)  will bring about significant cost-savings that will boost the competitiveness of the economy.  The rural electrification program has now extended power to 91% of the country’s households. It is  bringing considerable benefits, particularly to poor and vulnerable households (not least through the  improved environment for children’s studies). The completion of the much delayed Norochcholai coal  power station has helped to avoid power cuts or recourse to HIRING exceedingly expensive barges for  thermal generation.  The rehabilitation of the railway network and rolling STOCK, combined with the road development, will  increase mobility and help to contain transport costs which are an important determinant of an  economy’s competitiveness. Port and airport development is also creating the potential for Sri Lanka to  become a key transport and tourist/transit hub for Asia. The completion of the Hambantota Port and the  Colombo Southport Expansion will increase the capacity to take advantage of the country’s strategic  location on the major international shipping lanes. The growth of Indian TRADE and China’s appetite for  natural resources from the Middle East and Africa creates the conditions for rapid expansion of activity  in this sector. The second international airport at Mattala increases the potential for handling increased  tourist arrivals and positioning Sri Lanka as a transit hub.  Today Sri Lanka’s Bandranaike International Airport is the busiest airport in the country with more than 6  million passengers per year, Hambantota International airport in Mattala was declared opened in March,  2013 when Sri Lanka is celebrating a century in aviation.The domestic airports are scattered around the  country in Ampara, Anuradhapura, Batticaloa, Ratmalana, Jaffna, Trincomalee and Wirawila creating an  extensive network of domestic air travelling.  Commercial ports of Sri Lanka include Colombo, Hambanthota, Galle, Trincomalee, Kankesanturai and  Point Pedro. Although the port of Colombo is the premier port in the country the present government  policy for the development of regional ports in the country is seeing rapid development of Point Pedro,  Kankesanturai, Trincomalee,Galle and Hambanthota ports.  Meanwhile Sri Lanka is fast gaining popularity in the MICE tourism industry, with 11% of the total visitors  coming into the country representing the segment, while the industry anticipates the arrival of 240,000  MICE tourists by 2016, which is nearly 10% of the 2.5 million tourist target.With more than one million  tourist arrivals in 2012 the Sri Lankan tourism service providers has set a target of 22,500 rooms in the  next five years when tourist arrivals are expected to reach 2.5 million.  Some of the major hotel development projects currently underway in Sri Lanka include Shangri-La  Colombo and Hambanthota, Sheraton HOTELS AND Resorts Colombo, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts  Colombo and SonevaAhungalla among others, which are planning to open for business between years  2013-2015.  Why Visit Sri Lanka
NIGHT VIEW OF THE CAPITAL OF SRI LANKA - COLOMBO
GOLDEN TEMPLE - DAMBULLA
TEMPLE OF TOOTH RELIC - KANDY
SIGNATURE OF SRI LANKA - BEACHES
If golden beaches, rising waves, misty mountains, mighty elephants, stealthy leopards, giant whales, a majestic past, lovely tea and warm smiles could sum up  a country, that would be Sri Lanka. With many sites and scenes bottled up in to a small island, a traveler could be riding the waves in the dawn and admiring the green carpeted mountains by  dusk. Travel destinations in Sri Lanka provide an array of holiday experience from sun kissed beach holidays to a marathon of wildlife watching, adrenaline  pumping adventure sports and pilgrimage to some of the oldest cities in the world.  The smiles and hospitality of Sri Lanka is world famous and so are its spicy food, exotic fruits and array of sweetmeats found nowhere in the world. With so  many cultures living next to each other life in Sri Lanka continues among a series of festivities throughout the year, an ideal recipe for fun and leisure. 
DIVERSITY
CULTURAL HERITAGE
FESTIVALS YEAR AROUND
AYURVEDA & SPA
BEACHES
ADVENTURE & SPORTS
WILDLIFE
HOTELS
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