June 06, Colombo: Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals rose 6.2 percent in May this year compared to the same period last year, surpassing one million arrivals in the first five months of 2018, the data released by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) showed.
The month recorded 129,466 tourists arriving in the country compared to the 121,891arrived in May 2017.
As at 31st May, 1,017,819 tourists had visited Sri Lanka for this year. It is a 14.7 percent growth over last year when 887,093 tourists had visited the country during the same period.
Asia and Pacific continued to be the largest source of tourist traffic to Sri Lanka with 65% of the total traffic received in May 2018. Europe accounted for 27% of the total traffic, America 6%, Middle East 2% and Africa 0.5%.
India, China, United Kingdom, Germany and Australia were Sri Lanka's top five international tourist generating markets in the month of May this year. India was the largest source of tourist traffic to Sri Lanka with 33% of the total traffic received in May 2018. China accounted for 13% of the total traffic, while United Kingdom, Germany and Australia accounted for 7%, 5% and 4% respectively.
Arrivals from North America rose 11.3 percent to 6,734 in May and the arrivals from US rose 24.0 percent to 4,123 during the month while arrivals from Canada declined 1.6 percent.
Tourist arrivals from Europe increased by 8.6 percent with the arrival of 35,031 tourists. Most of the tourists came from UK (9,337), followed by Germany (6,906), and France (3,721).
Tourist arrivals from Middle East declined 22 percent with the arrival of 1,954 visitors.
Tourist arrivals from Asia & Pacific increased by 5.8 percent with 83,924 arriving in the island. Of those arrived from Asia, 42,073 were from India corresponding to an increase of 23.1 percent. Arrivals from Australia recorded 28.1 percent increase in arrivals with 3,805 visitors while arrivals from China declined by 7.52 percent with 17,103 visitors.
Over 2.1 million tourists arrived in Sri Lanka in 2017 contributing US$ 3.9 billion of earnings to the government revenues.