Sri Lanka Tourism Alliance ‘Conservation Tourism’ webinar series launching Friday 27 August at 10:30 a.m. (SL time) will discuss why conservation of Sri Lanka’s nature and wildlife matters to the future sustainability of the country’s tourism industry.
Sri Lanka’s tourism industry is heavily reliant on the country’s many natural blessings including our lush tropical jungles, lakes and rivers as well as our incredibly rich biodiversity. Small islands are usually not home to large mammals; however, Sri Lanka is an exception. Our ‘Big Five’ (Elephant, Leopard, Bear, Sperm Whale and Blue Whale) has earned Sri Lanka the title of ‘Best for Big Game Safaris’ outside of Africa.
Nature-based tourist attractions bring in substantial revenue for local and national economies and contribute heavily to national employment. As an example, ‘The Gathering’ of Minneriya named ‘One of the Wildlife Wonders of the World’ by Lonely Planet, was estimated to be worth well over ~ Rs. 4 billion ($ 22 million) in 2018, in tourism benefits to the country. The entry fees alone from Sri Lanka’s wildlife parks, zoological and botanical gardens and conservation forests amounted to 27.5% of the total revenue earned from tourism in 2018.
Despite the significant contribution to Sri Lanka’s economy, our natural world faces many challenges and receives next to no attention from the tourism industry for its conservation. In this two-part series, the Tourism Alliance will explore wildlife and nature conservation as it applies to the future sustainability of Sri Lanka’s tourism industry.
The first webinar in the Conservation Tourism webinar series which will launch via Zoom on Friday 27 August at 10:30 a.m. (SL time), will feature a panel of local and international experts: Sri Lanka’s Department of Wildlife Conservation (DWC) Former Director General Dr. Sumith Pilapitiya, The Hotels Association of Sri Lanka (THASL) Past President Srilal Miththapala and &Beyond Asia Director Toby Sinclair. The session will be introduced by Sri Lanka Tourism Alliance Co-Chair Malik J. Fernando and moderated by Shangri-La Colombo and Shangri-La Hambantota Director of Communications Niranga Gunaratna.
Source: Conservation Tourism webinar series: Protecting the future of tourism in Sri Lanka