Kolkata: Sri Lanka expects a 26% rise in Indian tourist footfall in the island nation in 2017, compared to the number of visitors from the country in 2016.

Sri Lanka, known for its verdant natural beauty, is aiming for about 4.5 lakh Indian tourists this year, compared to 3.56 lakh visitors from its mainland neighbour in 2016, Viranga Bandara, assistant director, marketing (India), of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Board (SLTPB), said.

“In 2016, Sri Lanka saw a growth of 12.8% in Indian arrival over the previous year," Bandara said, adding, “the country is known as the wonder of Asia for its long-preserved culture and heritage". Witnessing the growth and potential from India, SLTPB is aggressively marketing Sri Lankan destinations among Indian travellers to consolidate its presence in the Indian market.

Stating that Sri Lanka is growing as a destination for all seasons, Bandara said this is SLTPB’s first foray into Kolkata to woo travellers.

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