Here’s some good news for travellers. Sri Lanka is opening up its international airports for tourists from all countries on 23rd January 2021. Sri Lanka’s economy is highly dependent on tourism and this move will help kickstart their economy.
In this regard, Sri Lanka’s Tourism Department has identified 12 tourist locations across the country which can be visited by tourists only after all their mandatory PCR tests are negative. The 12 locations are
- Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic (Dalada Maligawa)
- Yala National Park
- Minneriya National Park
- Dambulla Temple
- Horton Plains
- Sinharaja Forest
- Peradeniya Botanic Gardens
- Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
- Whale watching
- Salusala- the State-owned handloom enterprise.
What does Sri Lanka opening up mean for Indian travellers?
Indians have been flooding Maldives and Dubai, and Sri Lanka will be a welcome addition to the mix. However, there are a few roadblocks and I’m listing them below.
- 14 days minimum stay compulsory in the country (good for those going on a workation, but not for “Indian tourists”)
- Negative COVID-19 RT-PCR Test prior to leaving
- RT-PCR test on arrival
- 3rd RT-PCR test on the 7th day
It goes without saying that you’ll have to apply and get your Sri Lankan visa online. If this is likely to be your first trip since the Coronavirus pandemic, Travelling in the times of Corona / COVID19 is a good starting point.
While it does seem a bit of a hassle, but we are noticing a lot of people doing staycations in Goa, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, and Sri Lanka would work perfectly for them, especially since it is not a costly destination.