Aug 06, Colombo: Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals declined in July by 1.8 percent compared to the same period last year, the data released by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) showed.
The month recorded 205,482 tourists arriving in the country compared to the 209,351 arrived in July 2016.
In the first seven months of this year 1,215,926 tourists visited the island compared to the 1,173,618 visited in the same period in 2016, recording an increase of 3.6 percent.
Arrivals from North America rose 6.1 percent to 10,875 in July while the arrivals from Western Europe increased by 3.9 percent to 80,896 during the month. Most of the tourists came from UK (23,553), followed by The Netherlands (11,990), France (11,390), and Germany (10,835). While arrivals from UK declined 1.6 percent, arrivals from Netherlands increased by 22.9 percent and from France by 4.0 percent.
Arrivals from Eastern Europe declined by 18.0 percent with the arrival of 6,127 tourists in July 2017. Arrivals from Russia declined 43.9 percent during the month while 14.9 percent more Ukrainians arrived in the island.
Tourist arrivals from Middle East declined 13.1 percent with the arrival of 16,163 visitors.
Tourist arrivals from East Asia declined 3.8 percent as 41,264 visited the country compared to the 42,890 visited in July 2016. Arrivals from China decreased 7.1 percent with 28,445 arriving last month.
Arrivals from South Asia also declined 4.2 percent with 40,769 tourists visiting the island. Arrivals from India increased by 4.8 percent to 29,006 compared to July 2016.
Although lower than the target of 2.2 million for the year, Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals in 2016 rose 14.0 percent with over 2.05 million tourists arrived in the island contributing US$ 3.52 billion of earnings to the government revenues.
Sri Lanka's Tourism Authority has set a target of 2.5 million tourist arrivals this year.