The fourth edition of Ankara International Tourism & Travel fair took place in Congresium Exhibition and Congress Centre in Ankara, Turkey, from 14th to 17th November 2019.
The Sri Lanka participation at the fair was organized by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Embassy in Ankara, Turkey. The Sri Lankan delegation at the fair consisted of prominent Travel and Tourism Industry representatives such as Jetwing Travels and Figo Travels and BOC Travels. The delegation was led by Ms. Sarangi Thilakasena, Assistant Director, and officer in charge of the Polish market, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau. (SLTPB) . Sri Lanka participated in the exhibition with a large, Colorful and eye catching country pavilion, with separate desks for each company, mentioned above, where promotional brochures on Sri Lankan Tourism and Sri Lankan tea were distributed during the course of the exhibition. Also, fine examples of traditional Sri Lankan cuisine were offered to the visitors of the pavilion and they had the chance to taste the unique flavor of pure Ceylon tea as well.
A Sri Lankan dance troupe joined the delegation from Italy to present the cultural diversity and colours of Sri Lanka during the event with their fascinating dance and drum performances. The dance troupe carried out regular dance performances during the course of the exhibition as well as two separate performances on 15th and 16th of November at the popular Armada shopping mall.
The official opening of the event took place on 14th of November 2019, with the participation of the high level officials of the local administration, District and Metropolitan municipalities, Provincial Directorate of Culture and Tourism, Business chambers and the governorship of Ankara.
After the opening remarks by the distinguished invitees of the event and the Ankara governor, The Sri Lankan dance troupe performed a three stage dance show, accompanied with traditional drums.
Following the official opening, the Sri Lankan Country pavilion was inaugurated by the governor of Ankara, Mr. Vasip Sahin , and other high profile officials , along with the Sri Lankan Ambassador in Turkey , H.E M.R .Hassen .
The Sri Lankan travel agents had the opportunity to meet and coordinate with travel and tourism companies from Turkey as well as from other countries. A separate bilateral meeting was arranged by the Embassy for the Sri Lankan participants, parallel to the bilateral meetings arranged by the ATIS fair authorities. At the reception & Networking session hosted by the Sri Lankan Embassy in Ankara, The Sri Lankan delegation also had the chance to meet with reputed organizations and individuals related to the Travel & Tourism Industry in Ankara. SETUR Travels & Tourism, Alabanda Tourism, Cozmos, Altus, Jolly Tours, Tempo Tourism, Turkish Association for tour operators (TURSAB) and president of Turkish Union of Tourist Guides chambers were among the reputed companies based on Ankara at the event. The Sri Lankan companies were able to discuss future business partnerships and collaboration with the Turkish organizations. Participating in this event enabled Sri Lanka to promote its tourism products further in the Turkish market and encourage more tourist arrivals from Turkey to the destination.