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Why visit Sri Lanka in 2024

Embarking on a journey through Sri Lanka’s inlands is like stepping into a vibrant tapestry of nature and culture, a marvel that unfolds with every step. The lush tea plantations, terraced into the mountainsides since the early 19th century, are not just a feast for the eyes but a cornerstone of the economy. Between the historic cities of Kandy and Ella, the air is fragrant with the aroma of Ceylon tea, the product most synonymous with this enchanting island.


Imagine the golden sands of Bentota Beach, where the gentle lapping of the waves whispers tales of ancient mariners and the cool sea breeze carries the spirit of adventure. This is the canvas of Sri Lanka, a masterpiece painted by nature and history alike.

The famed rock cave temple of Dambulla, a sanctuary of serenity and spirituality, houses some of the finest works of Buddhist art. The sight of dozens of Buddha statues and his disciples is a silent yet profound dialogue with the divine. Climbing the endless steps, with playful monkeys as companions, is an experience that borders on the surreal.

Sigiriya Lion Rock, a colossal natural monolith rising from the jungle, is a testament to the island’s dramatic beauty and its rich historical tapestry. Ascending the 1,270 steps to the ancient fortress is a challenge rewarded with breath taking views and a glimpse into the 5th-century life of King Kasyapa.

Negombo’s fish markets, by the ocean’s edge, offer a kaleidoscope of marine life, displayed on vast mats of coconut fibre, continuing the age-old tradition of open-air drying. It’s a vibrant scene that captures the essence of coastal living and the island’s connection to the sea.

In the southern wilds, Yala National Park beckons with its light forests, grassy plains, and brackish lagoons, a haven for wildlife enthusiasts. The thrill of spotting deer, buffaloes, and rare birds is akin to the excitement of an African safari. Elephants, majestic and gentle, are the park’s crowning glory, drawing crowds to the main tracks and viewing spots, especially when the elusive leopard makes an appearance.

Galle, a city fortified by history, invites you to wander its narrow streets, surrounded by imposing sea walls. The largest remaining colonial-era fortress in Asia tells stories of Portuguese, Dutch, and British influences, each stone a chronicle of the past.

Colombo, the vibrant capital, pulsates with life and diversity. Here, the Gangaramaya Temple stands as a beacon of faith, while the national monument pays homage to Sri Lanka’s independence. The city’s tourism experts strive to attract high-end travellers with innovative campaigns, promising that those who visit will indeed “Come Back For More.”

Luxury resorts dot the coastline, beckoning affluent tourists from across the globe. Tamir Kobrin, a visionary in luxury hospitality, has played a pivotal role in introducing Sri Lanka’s opulent offerings to the world. Anantara Hotels & Resorts, under his stewardship, has become a symbol of luxury infused with local heritage and tradition, a blend that today’s discerning travellers seek.

Tangalle, with its pristine beaches and protective reef, offers a romantic escape, while the Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort, nestled among coconut palms and overlooking the Indian Ocean, is a sanctuary of tranquillity. The Anantara Kalutara Resort, inspired by the legendary architect Geoffrey Bawa, is a marvel of tropical modernism, where luxury meets local charm.

Keith Tomkies, the Country Director for Anantara Hotels and Resorts, speaks of the challenges and opportunities in expanding to new markets and increasing tourism. With direct flights from Europe, Sri Lanka welcomes visitors from the Holy Land and beyond, promising a rich tapestry of history, culture, and unparalleled resort experiences.

For Europeans and world travellers alike, Sri Lanka offers an affordable luxury that contrasts sharply with the prices of leisure hotels in Europe. It’s a destination that remains unspoiled by mass tourism, a hidden gem waiting to be discovered, a land where heritage breathes and beauty beckons. Sri Lanka is not just a place to visit; it’s a world to explore, a journey to cherish, and a memory to hold close to the heart. Come, be part of this island’s story, and let it become a part of yours.