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Mega outbound tourism promotional roadshow in the Kingdom of Bahrain


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Some of the select senior management of corporates, tour operators and travel agents from Sri Lanka and Bahrain at the tourism promotional roadshow, along with Ambassador Dr. Mendis, SLTPB Director Madubhani Perera, and SriLankan Airlines Country Manager in Bahrain Samantha Nagahawatta, among others

Ambassador Dr. Saj Mendis delivering the welcome address at the tourism promotional roadshow in Bahrain. Seated from left: Barshan Azeez of Jetwing Travels, Samantha Nagahawatta of SriLankan Airlines, Madubhani Perera of SLTPB, and Faheem Sulaimani of Air Arabia 

 


The Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) of the Ministry of Tourism, in close coordination with the Embassy of Sri Lanka in the Kingdom of Bahrain, conducted a mega tourism promotional roadshow in order to entice, encourage and woo tourists and visitors from Bahrain to Sri Lanka. The mega roadshow and promotional event consisted of business to business (B2B) sessions, comprehensive and informative presentations and workshops, proactive interaction between Sri Lankan and Bahrain-based select corporates and tour/travel agents, Q&A session, and raffle draws, followed by dinner at the foremost Gulf Hotel in Bahrain. Nearly 20 corporates, travel agents, tour operators, and hoteliers from Sri Lanka travelled to Bahrain to participate at this promotional event, along with officials of Sri Lanka Tourism. Well over 120 travel agents, tour operators, and companies from Bahrain attended the event and interacted with the Sri Lankan travel and hospitality contingent, thus making the tourism promotional event highly successful, productive and result oriented.  

Some of the leading companies from Sri Lanka which participated included: Hilton Hotel Colombo; Diethelm Travel Group; Serendib Leisure Ltd.; Hamoos Travels Ltd.; George Steuart Travel; Jetwing Travels; and Sunway Holidays, among others. This expansive promotional event and roadshow commenced around 4.30 in the evening, thus enabling both Sri Lankan and Bahrain companies and travel/tour companies to engage in B2B activities on a proactive and comprehensive basis till about 7.30 in the evening. The formal segment of the promotional event began after the B2B interactive session. The Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Bahrain, Dr. A. Saj U. Mendis, welcomed the invitees from Bahrain and Sri Lankan corporates in his welcome address at the tourism promotional event. This was followed by a comprehensive and a meticulously structured power-point presentation by Sri Lanka Tourism Marketing Director Madubhani Perera, which encompassed almost all touristic attractions including flora & fauna, adventure and eco-friendly tourism, UNESCO heritage and cultural sites, festivals and special events, national parks and luxury resorts as well as breath-taking beaches and manicured tea gardens, among others, as well as the international endorsements Sri Lanka has received from highly reputed travel and touristic magazines and organisations. The presentation highlighted and enunciated the fact that Sri Lanka is an ideal and perfectly fitting location for wedding ceremonies, family-focused visits, and newly married couples and honeymooners, as well as for business and corporate Annual General Meetings (AGMs) and company get-togethers, among others. The presentation made by SriLankan Airlines highlighted the easy access to Sri Lanka from Bahrain, including the high degree of frequency of flights between the two countries. Today, there are daily SriLankan Airlines direct flights, and Gulf Air operates five direct flights a week, thus establishing easy connectivity to Bahrain and Middle Eastern tourists and travellers. Air Arabia, which was also a sponsor of the tourism promotional event, made a presentation of touristic attributes and characteristics of Sri Lanka, as well as the connectivity of Air Arabia.

Ambassador Dr. Mendis, in his welcome address, accentuated that Sri Lanka is a Mecca for tourism, taking into consideration the number of touristic attractions, leisure activities, sightseeing of many parts of the inimitable landscape of the country, entertainment and shopping and different kinds of culinary cuisine, among others. He further added that, today, Sri Lanka is amongst the safest and most secure and peaceful countries in the world. Ambassador Dr. Mendis highlighted that a number of travel and tourism magazines of repute such as Lonely Planet, BBC Good Foods, I-Escape Website of UK, Asian Mirror, British Airways, and National Geographic, among others, have listed Sri Lanka as among the most sought-after tourist destinations in the world, on par with other highly visited destinations such as France, Spain, Hawaii, and Thailand. Both Ambassador Dr. Mendis and Sri Lanka Tourism Director Perera stated that the country, today, possesses some of the finest and most reputed international chains of hotels as well as resorts and restaurants of global standards. 

Both Ambassador Mendis and Director Perera stated that tourism is considered as one of the economic pivots by the Government of Sri Lanka, and the Government as well as Sri Lanka Tourism extends and expends significant amounts of funds to upgrade and advance the touristic infrastructure, in all spheres and provinces in the country, thus accommodating and facilitating all needs and desires of discerning and perceptive tourists and visitors to Sri Lanka. Ambassador Mendis added that given the absolute security and stability in the country, among other touristic endowments, the potential visitors from Bahrain as well as from neighbouring Middle Eastern countries would manifestly find Sri Lanka as one of the finest tourist destinations in the world. Sri Lanka Tourism Marketing Director Perera stated that Sri Lanka Tourism was ardent and keen to promote, profile, and enhance the image of Sri Lanka amongst the potential visitors and tourists in the Middle East region. In this context, she added that roadshows were held in other Middle Eastern cities as well. 

Many of the corporates and travel agents who attended the Tourism Road Show in Bahrain were fascinated and spellbound by the touristic attractions and utility of the country, and most stated that they would emphatically and aggressively promote and persuade potential tourists and visitors, including the large expatriate populace domiciled in Bahrain, to travel to Sri Lanka for their next vacation. 

 


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