The Embassy of Sri Lanka in the Republic of Korea in association with the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau organised three tourism promotional events in Seoul to raise awareness of Sri Lanka as an attractive tourist destination among the Korean public and the travel trade.
The first event included organising of the first ever Sri Lanka Day in the heart of Seoul, with the support of the Korean Culture Association and the SEOULLO Management Office, on Saturday 16 June 2018 at SEOULLO 7017 - Magnolia Square.
The Sri Lanka Day, held in busy central Seoul on a Saturday, included attractive Sri Lankan dance performances by the Olaboduwa Dance Academy of Sri Lanka, and showcasing and selling of authentic Sri Lankan products including pure Ceylon tea, Sri Lankan batiks, Sri Lankan gems & jewellery, spa products, and Sri Lankan food. Sri Lankan dance and Kpop, as well as attractive games and quizzes, made the event both attractive and interactive for youth, adults and families with young children. The Korean public also enjoyed Sri Lankan food which included short eats such as rolls, cutlets, patties, wade and roti, and delicacies such as chicken curry and sambol, as well as pure Ceylon tea served hot or cold.
The Sri Lanka Day was inaugurated by two distinguished Members of Parliament of Sri Lanka Harshana Rajakaruna and Sujith Sanjaya Perera; the Ambassador of Sri Lanka in the Republic of Korea Manisha Gunasekera; Chairman Korea International Travel Fair (KOTFA) Shin Joong Mok; and representatives of the Seoul Metropolitan Government, SEOULLO management office, the Korean Culture Association, and the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau.
Meanwhile the Sri Lanka Pavilion at the 33rd Korea International Travel Fair (KOTFA) displayed from 14 to 17 June 2018 at the COEX exhibition center in Seoul, attracted many Korean visitors over the four days. All major tourist destinations of Asia, the Middle East, Europe and Africa had a strong presence in KOTFA, which is the single largest consumer travel exposition in Korea, attracting more than 70,000 visitors.
The Sri Lanka Pavilion at KOTFA was officially inaugurated by Members of Parliament of Sri Lanka Harshana Rajakaruna and Sujith Sanjaya Perera; Member of the Korean National Assembly Noh Woong-Rae; Ambassador of Sri Lanka in the Republic of Korea Manisha Gunasekera; Chairman, KOTFA Shin Joong Mok; representatives of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau and the Sri Lankan travel trade on Thursday, 14 June 2018.
The Sri Lanka Pavilion was centrally located and well-designed featuring the country’s top tourist themes and attractions. Visitors to the Pavilion who enjoyed Sri Lankan dance performances by the Olaboduwa Dance Academy, were served with a refreshing cup of Ceylon tea, and given the opportunity to win gifts by participating in various mini-competitions.
A highlight was the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau winning “the Best Performance award of KOTFA 2018” for outstanding performances by the Olaboduwa Dance Academy, which also performed at the KOTFA luncheon and were applauded by the dignitaries and invitees present.
The Sri Lankan travel trade comprising Amaya Resorts & Spas, Jetwing Travels, Aitken Spence (Pvt) Ltd, Royal Holidays, Andrews Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Seasons Travels and Jaya Lanka Tours participated in KOTFA 2018. TeaTalk, Dudley Batiks and Asian Gems & Jewellery also participated in KOTFA and the Sri Lanka Day promoting pure Ceylon tea, Sri Lankan batiks and gems & jewellery. Spa Ceylon Korea also participated in the latter.
As the third promotional event, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador Manisha Gunasekera, with Members of Parliament Harshana Rajakaruna and Sujith Sanjaya Perera, formally presented two beautifully framed photographs of world renowned Sri Lankan Buddhist sites, the Gal Viharaya in Polonnaruwa and the interior of the Sacred Temple of the Tooth in Kandy, to the Chief Priest of the Jogyesa Temple the Most Venerable Jihyun on Friday 15 June 2018 in Seoul. Framed photographs of Sri Lankan Buddhist sites were also formally presented to Chief Priests of the four Sri Lankan Buddhist Temples located in close proximity to Seoul who were present at the ceremony, along with representatives of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau and senior clergy of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism.
The presentation of photographs to Jogyesa, the main Temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism, also launched a Sri Lanka tourism promotion campaign to increase awareness among Korean Buddhists of the ancient and authentic Buddhist heritage of Sri Lanka. The photographs are to be displayed in Korean Buddhist Temple premises, and 200 such photos will be presented to Temples of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism and their travel and tourism affiliates, as well as to Korean Temples maintaining close and friendly relations with Sri Lanka. It is hoped that such awareness raising would persuade more Korean tourists including Buddhists to visit Sri Lanka and discover its many attractions.
These promotional events were organised by the Commercial Section of the Embassy under the leadership of Minster (Commercial) Jagath Abeywarna in association with the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau.