The Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) together with other tourism institutions under the Ministry of Tourism Development and Christian Religious Affairs will be organising an event titled ‘Tourism Fest with the spirit of Christmas’ from 19 to 23 December at the Arcade, Independence Square.
The month of December being a peak month for tourist arrivals and festivities, the idea behind this is to portray Sri Lankan food, culture, gems, tea,shopping and entertainment at one venue.
Amongst the main attractions during this fest will be an exhibition on Sri Lankan culture and heritage and special exhibitions from wildlife, zoological gardens, handicrafts and gems. In addition, a food festival on Sri Lankan and international cuisine with the participation of leading hotels and restaurants in Colombo and a tea boutique are targeted to offer a delectable experience to the visitors.
Traditional cultural shows, musical performances by orchestras of the armed forces, performance of live musical bands,shopping bazaar and live carols will also be incorporated to embody a true spirit of Christmas. A kiddies’ play area and children’s entertainment will also be available at the venue for the enjoyment of the whole family.
Minister of Tourism Development and Christian Religious AffairsJohn Amaratunga is keen to make this festive season a memorable one for the record number of visitors expected in the city this year.
“After many years, the country is enjoying true freedom. This is the first festive season under the new Government. I have been informed that many Sri Lankans domiciled abroad plan to take advantage of this and visit the country after many years. We want to make this a memorable visit for them and the thousands of tourists who will be travelling to the country,” said Amaratunga.
All activities will take place at the Arcade Independence Square from 19 to 23 December from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. and will be inaugurated with a spectacle of fireworks which is expected to be a major attraction.
“Our objective is to position Sri Lanka as an upscale tourist destination and organising an event of this nature showcasing a glimpse of its varied attractions in one location while celebrating in a festive atmosphere would help in achieving such aims,” SLTDA Director General Malraj B. Kiriella said.
“This fest is also to create a Sri Lankan sense of celebration and spread the spirit of this season to all tourists in the island during the holidays, the diplomatic and expat community and to the local community while celebrating their holidays with friends and relatives,” he added.
A special double decker shuttle bus from selected Colombo hotels organised by the ‘Colombo City Tour’will be available daily to and from the venue with live carols.