Culture and Tourism


Sri Lanka: Welcome to the Land of Serendipity 

For centuries, this beautiful tropical island in the Indian Ocean has drawn travellers from across the globe to its sandy, palm fringed shores.  A land of golden beaches, misty mountains, mysterious old ruins and rare wildlife, Sri Lanka has long been a paradise for those seeking an idyllic holiday.  

This green, magical island caters for all tourists, including the littlest visitor to the country.  Despite being a relatively small island, the country’s abundant natural beauty and cultural diversity, ensures that it offers something for everyone.



The Coast

By far the most popular destinations for tourists are the white sandy beaches, swaying palm trees and turquoise waters  of Sri Lanka’s beaches. With stunning sunsets in the evening, these beaches are not just for those seeking a relaxing time under the sun…it is also for the adventure seeking adrenaline junky to go surfing, waterskiing, windsurfing, diving or snorkeling.  For those with a penchant for wildlife, a boat ride away is the largest animal on earth – the blue whale, along with several other species of whales and dolphins found in the seas of Sri Lanka. Divers have the opportunity of discovering ancient wrecks on the seabed or swimming with the colourful fish in coral reefs.

 The coastline is also dotted with nostalgic buildings, harking back to the colonial history of the island.  These include the beautiful forts of Galle and Jaffna, the heritage Dutch buildings, churches and quaint, winding streets lined with painted little houses that take you back to a different time and place. 

West and South Coast: Negambo, Mt.Lavinia, Hikkaduwa, Beruwela, Kosgoda, Weligama, Bentota, Unawatuna, Galle, Tangalle, Mirissa

East Coast: Arugam Bay, Trincomalee, Pasikudah, Kalkudah, Uppuveli, Nilaveli 


The Mountains

The mist shrouded green mountains of Sri Lanka rise from the centre of the country, reaching 2524 metres at its highest point.  The mountains are home to lush green forests, rolling plains, tumbling waterfalls and acres and acres of tea plantations.  Spend your time at a tea estate, understanding how this golden brew is made or take a hike in the Knuckles mountains or Horton Plains, where some of the most rare plants and animals are found.  Bathe in many of the crystal clear waters of the rivers and waterfalls or visit a tiny village where some of the country’s oldest traditions are still preserved.  

The hill country, as it is a called, is where you will find some of the most ancient sites in the country. The Temple of the Sacred Tooth of the Buddha in Kandy is also the venue for the breathtaking annual pageant called the Esela Perahera, that has been held unchanged, since the time of ancient kings. The ancient cave temple at Dambulla and the beautiful botanical gardens of Peradeniya are also sights not to be missed. The sacred mountain of Sri Pada or Adam’s Peak, is revered by all religions.  Annually, pilgrims of different religions make the arduous climb to its peak, to receive blessings of the deities.

Places to go: NuwaraEliya, Horton Plains, Kandy, Dambulla 


Ancient Cities

Located in the North Central area of Sri Lanka, the country’s most ancient cities dating back to thousands of years are found in Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa.  Ancient stupas, rising into the clouds, gigantic statues, temples, palaces, royal gardens and huge lakes, astound modern historians and scientists alike with their architectural mastery.  The magnificent rock fortress of Sigirya to the cave temples of Dambulla to the lesser known historical treasures such as the 500 year old wooden bridge at Bogoda, are some the many historic sites dotted around the country. 

Places to go: Anuradhapura, Pollonnaruwa, Kandy, Dambulla, Sigiriya,  Potuvil, Kudumbigala 


Forests and Wildlife Parks

The country has several wildlife sanctuaries and parks, where the wild leopard, elephant, sloth bear, deer, buffalo and a host of other animals and birds roam free.   The Yala and Wilpattu national parks are best for spotting leopard and bear, while Minneriya and Wasgamuwa parks offer the best places to see elephants in the wild. Tropical and migratory birds, such as flamingoes, could be seen in several wetlands in the country.  The coastal seas that surround the island are home to many coral reefs and pods of whales, dolphins and turtles. Sri Lanka is a biodiversity hotspot and home to the “Sinharaja” rain forest, an ideal destination for hikers.  Here you will find some of the most rare flora and fauna in the world, many of which are endemic to the island.  The Horton Plains is also another spot to see some magnificent mountain scenery and some rare, endemic plants, as well as animals like sambur. 

While Sri Lanka is proud of its wildlife and nature, it also is very conscious of protecting its environment and safeguarding the country’s unique biodiversity. 

Places to go: Yala, Wilpattu, Wasgamuwa, Kumana, Udawalawe


Health and Wellness

Sri Lanka’s ayurvedic traditions date back to centuries and have been used by kings and ordinary folk alike.  This holistic treatment offers not only cures to many ailments but it also rejuvenates the mind and body and alleviates the stresses of modern life. Traditional ayurvedic treatment is offered at several specialized hotels and resorts, especially in the South coast.  In addition, for those seeking a spiritual experience and inner peace, meditation programames and yoga lessons are offered by specialized centres in some of the most scenic and peaceful areas in the country.  



Sri Lanka’s lush, natural vegetation, bountiful sea and rich cultural diversity has given rise to a wonderful culinary experience for visitors to this island. The country’s cuisine boasts of some of the extraordinary ingredients the island is long famed for – the fragrant spices, the pure Ceylon tea and the aromatic Ceylon Cinnamon. Fragrant yellow rice, biriyani, lamprais and milk rice are some of the ways that the staple diet of the people is cooked.  Try some hoppers, a crispy pancake, or soft noodle like stringhoppers, coconut roti or the exotic kottu roti, the making of which is a sight to behold.  Prawns, crab and lobster, cooked to perfection and meats, grilled or cooked in a variety of ways, with wonderful vegetables and sambals are a must for those who wish to taste Sri Lanka’s cuisine.  For those with a sweet tooth, traditional kevun, aluwa or thalaguli would be a delightful dessert along with tropical fruits such as mango, pineapple or papaya.





Get ready to embark on a new journey in tourism sector by overcoming challenges – President calls on tourism entrepreneurs


In the face of prevailing COVID – 19 pandemic the Government has taken every possible measure to provide all required facilities notwithstanding the health related restrictions imposed to ensure safety of the public. As the tourism sector is a vital component of the national economy of this country, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa called on the entrepreneurs of the field to get ready to embark on a new journey by overcoming challenges.

President made these remarks during a discussion with the representatives of the tourism sector held at the Presidential Secretariat today (17). Heads of line institutes in the tourist industry and leading entrepreneurs were present.

Attention was paid to give priority to the personnel such as hotel employees, tour guides and drivers under the ongoing COVID vaccination programme.  It was stated that there is no requirement to quarantine service providers when the tourists are not tested positive.

A decision was taken to shuttle the infected tourists to the hospital in Koggala managed by Lanka Hospital (Pvt) Limited and Sri Lanka Army. President instructed officials to pay due attention to direct the tourists as per the approved tourism plan.

The President advised the relevant officials to make necessary measures to improve facilities for tourists and to take into account the comments made by them when they depart to their respective countries.

The entrepreneurs stated that they will take all steps possible to achieve future goals under proper strategies as the government has already provided necessary reliefs.

During the discussion it was revealed that according to the figures, the percentage of COVID-19 infected tourists, who arrived in the country during the outbreak, is less than 1%.

Head of the Presidential Task Force for Economic Revival and Poverty Alleviation, Basil Rajapaksa, stated that the advantage of Sri Lanka ranking at the 10th place in the COVID-19 Performance Index for its successful handling of the coronavirus pandemic can be utilized for the promotion of tourism industry. He further stressed that the individuals, who are engaged in tourism should take necessary measures to uplift the industry by adhering to the health guidelines, during this challenging period.

Minister of Tourism Prasanna Ranatunga, the Acting Health Minister Prof. Channa Jayasumana, State Ministers Dr. Sudarshani Fernandopulle, D.V. Chanaka, Secretary to the President P.B. Jayasundera and Ministry Secretaries, Heads of State Institutions related to the tourism industry, members of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 Prevention and other officials participated in the discussion.

HELLO AGAIN - Important Information for Tourists Visiting Sri Lanka

Welcome back to the paradise island of Sri Lanka. As we open our doors to the world once again ; we've pulled out all the stops, ensuring that every precautionary measure has been set in place to make your island getaway as safe, secure and serene as possible. In your preparation to explore the wild and wonderful, we'd like to bring your attention to the 'things you need to know ' for your safety as you make your way to an amazing time that is So Sri Lanka!


Link for further information and downloads:




The first-ever Bring a Friend Home campaign launched in Sri Lanka is an initiative to support the recovery plan for tourism in Sri Lanka. We look forward to your organization’s support to prompt Sri Lankan’s living abroad to become an ambassador for the country by promoting Sri Lanka and encouraging fellow Sri Lankans as well as family and friends living overseas to visit the Island over the next few months through this program.

Bring a Friend Home by Cinnamon allows you to invite your friend to Sri Lanka and be rewarded with amazing prizes. You may create your very own customized postcard with a picture of our beautiful island home which could be shared on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp or Email. Follow these simple steps and make a difference!

Bring a Friend Home – How to be Eligible - Watch the Guide -

  1. Visit our website
  2. Click on the option ‘Recommend to a Friend’
  3. Create your own account with your email address & contact number
  4. Log into your account using the email address and password
  5. Once you reach this step, you will get access to all our sharable content on the site all of which can be shared on a variety of social media sites and messaging platforms including WhatsApp, Twitter, Messenger, Facebook and Email.
  6. Create your very own customized postcard or download a custom made letter that can be posted to a friend.
  7. #BringaFriendHomeSL and share the content among any number of friends

Please support this initiative by sharing and promoting the content of and spreading the word. Also see here for all communication material regarding the campaign that can be shared with friends, family and colleagues.

We would be happy to offer you more information or support as needed. Please feel free to contact us on +94 (0) 70 5956308 or email hasara(at) .

Thank you and look forward to your partnership.

Cinnamon Hotel Management Ltd.
Cinnamon Lakeside Commercial Complex
No.117, Sir Chittampalam A Gardinar Mawatha,
Colombo 02, Sri Lanka.

“Inserting a gallery:”


Sri Lanka participated at the Ferien-Messe Wien International trade fair for holiday, travel and leisure held from 10 - 13 January 2019 in Vienna, Austria. Sri Lanka’s participation at this event was coordinated by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau and the Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka in Vienna, Austria.

The Ferien-Messe Wien, the leading trade fair for tourism in Central Europe is held every year at the beginning of the holiday season for holiday, travel and variety seekers, and attracted approximately 800 national and international exhibitors and more than 155,000 visitors this year.

Six companies from the hospitality, travel and wellness industry participated under the Sri Lanka Pavilion, namely, Siddhalepa Ayurvedha Health Resort, Sri Lanka Jagath Tours and Travels, Baberyn Ayurvedic Beach Resort (Pvt) Ltd, Ceylon Roots,Butterfly Vacation, Lets Travels.

The Sri Lanka Pavilion was inaugurated by the Chargée d’Affaires of the Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka in Vienna, Austria on 10 January 2019 with the lighting of the traditional oil lamp in the presence of invitees. Traditional Sri Lanka refreshments were also served.

Promotion of Ceylon tea by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau and the Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka in Vienna, Austria was conducted during the four days of the Ferien-Messe Wien.

A Presentation on Sri Lanka as a tourist destination titled “Sri Lanka Perle des Indischen Ozeans” (Sri Lanka pearl of the Indian Ocean) was also made at the Travel Cinema at the Fair.



We are proud to inform that “Lonely Planet”, one of the most reputed tourist guides in the world, named Sri Lanka as the “Best country in the world to visit in 2019”.

Ethan Gelber, author of the Lonely Planet “Best in Travel 2019” book writes: “Sri Lanka is decidedly having its moment in the equatorial sun and change is coming swiftly. Already notable to intrepid travellers for its mix of religions and cultures, its timeless temples, its rich and accessible wildlife, its growing surf scene and its people who defy all odds by their welcome and friendliness after decades of civil conflict, this is a country revived. There’s now more than ever for families, adrenaline junkies, eco-tourists, wellness seekers and foodies of all budgets. Even the north and east, including areas previously off limits, difficult to reach or lacking in services, deliver new discoveries.”

As a few countries issued Travel Advisories regarding Sri Lanka, it shall be pointed out that no incidents of violence or disruption has been reported following the recent events. The Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Austria is labelling Sri Lanka with Security Level 2, which is the second best possible, and is the same level as attributed to the United Kingdom and France.



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