Russian website News GE carries a special report on the rising numbers of German visitors to Sri Lanka, noting that “entering Sri Lanka is relatively trouble-free by South Asian standards, as more and more Germans are discovering”.

Torsten Schäfer, spokesman for the German Travel Association (DRV), says that Germans are very experienced travelers and like to seek out destinations they haven’t been to before. He says: “For a while, Sri Lanka wasn’t very popular on the tourist map. That has changed considerably in the past five years.”

Since 2010, the number of German arrivals in Sri Lanka has risen by about 20 percent or more nearly every year, from 46,000 to more than 125,000. Schäfer says the long-distance travel trend among Germans is continuing. “Destinations that can be easily combined are especially popular: For instance, first a stop in Dubai, then on to the Maldives or Sri Lanka.”

Read the full report here.


UK mum creates wonderful Sri Lankan spice mixes

The UK’s Daily Echo reports that “if you want curry in a hurry, then help is at hand thanks to an enterprising Dorset mum—Illana Smith from Poole, has created Hari Hari, an award-winning range of pre-blended authentic Sri Lankan spice mixes”.

Being half English and half Sri Lankan, and having spent a considerable part of her life in Sri Lanka, she developed a true love for the local cuisine, she says.

“Hari Hari aims to make cooking a curry yourself less intimidating, so you too can cook a truly delicious curry in your own kitchen with ease and you also won’t end up with numerous spice jars sitting at the back of your cupboards for years to come.”

Read the full report here.


A festival of roaring bikes boosts tourism

Our own Daily News reports that the Colombo Bike Week 2017, “a festival of roaring big bikes, will be held from February 23 to March 12 covering many tourist destinations of Sri Lanka with the aim to boost tourism and promote big bike culture in Sri Lanka.

Says Neil Hassim, CEO of Motor Adventure Sports (MAS): “Our plan is to ship 30 big bikes to Sri Lanka from ASEAN for the two-week lone programme. The Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau has endorsed the event and it is now on the National Tourism Calendar.

“In addition we will also have the first gathering of the Global Bikers United in Colombo, as many of its members will be coming for the Colombo Bike Week.”

Read the full report here,


The ultimate travel bucket list for 2017

The Irish Examiner reports that “with thousands of destinations across the globe, it can be difficult to pick just one, particularly if you have a limited budget”.

It names ten of the best destinations, with Sri Lanka ranked #3 in a scorecard heavily weighted towards cultural experiences, as well as just having a great time.

It says: “How do you even begin to explain the sheer beauty of Sri Lanka? An island perched just south of India in the Indian Ocean; its diverse landscapes range from rainforest and sun-soaked plains to highlands, waterfalls and sandy beaches, and just about everything else in between!”

Read the full report here.


Sri Lanka’s next incarnation: a beguiling alternative

The National Post in Canada carries a story from the Washington Post reporting that “Sri Lanka’s east coast, running from Trincomalee in the north to the grasslands of Yala in the south, has good reason to feel optimistic about the future”.

The lengthy piece charts how the writer and his family “explored the coast, then delved inland, where wild elephants bathed in shimmering lagoons and crocodiles lurked among the lily pads in tanks, the huge reservoirs built as part of the great irrigation projects of Sinhalese kings.

“Change was always in the air, though, here in the east. A few years back, I learned from conversations with locals, one of the most idyllic beaches we visited, called Peanut Farm, had been annexed by the government despite local opposition.

“The new government had returned it—now the local villagers were busy building a guesthouse of their own. For the time being, at least, the atmosphere that sets eastern Sri Lanka apart looks set to endure.”

Read the full report here.


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