On the 24th of October, 2023, Sri Lanka approved free VISA on arrival for Indian citizens in Sri Lanka that are visiting the country for the purposes of travelling or leisure. Apart from India, six other countries received this benefit, indicating Sri Lanka’s growing focus on expanding incoming tourism. This initiative is part of a pilot project that has recently launched and will be in effect till 24th March, 2024. This VISA will allow you to travel as a tourist throughout Sri Lanka, enjoying all its beauty and culture for as many as 30 days. So, hurry up and grab your beachwear, Sri Lanka’s calling!
VISA-on-arrival for Indian citizens in Sri Lanka: What to expect at the airport
There are two ways to obtain your Indian Tourist VISA from Sri Lanka if you plan to visit the country.
Free VISA-on-arrival for Indian citizens in Sri Lanka
Once you land in Sri Lanka, either at a dock or at the airport, you will be given a disembarkation card to fill out after a thorough security check. Once you fill the card, you can head on to the immigration counter. There, you will have to present your passport and other required documents, such as your return tickets and proof of accommodation. The immigration officer will then process your request and issue you a visa-on-arrival stamp in your passport.
Sri Lanka’s e-VISA for Indians is also free
To get your free Sri Lanka e-VISA for Indians, you have to visit the country’s official Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) website. On the website, register and fill out the online application form for Indians travelling to Sri Lanka. Provide all the required documents and submit the application. Upon successful submission, you will receive an email notification with your ETA approval. Print out the ETA approval and keep it with you when travelling to Sri Lanka and present it at the immigration counter for immediate entry to the country.
Note that both of these pathways are free of cost and you do not have to pay a single rupee to travel and roam around in Sri Lanka. While you are there, here are some of the best places you have to visit:
Best places to visit in Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka is a beautiful country that offers a wide range of attractions for tourists. Its natural beauty, rich culture, and diverse landscapes make it a popular destination for travellers from around the world.
1. Dambulla cave temple
The Dambulla cave temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. The temple is located in the central part of the country and is known for its 5-cave complex, which houses over 150 Buddha statues and murals. The temple is also home to a number of other religious and cultural artefacts, including a sacred reclining Buddha statue. It is a must-visit for any traveller to Sri Lanka.
2. Arugam bay
Arugam Bay is a popular surfing and beach destination located in the eastern part of Sri Lanka. The bay is known for its long, sandy beaches and consistent waves, making it a popular spot for surfers of all levels. In addition to surfing, Arugam Bay also offers a variety of other activities, such as swimming, sunbathing, and fishing.
Jaffna is the capital of the Northern Province of Sri Lanka. It is a city with a rich history and culture, and is home to a number of Hindu temples and Tamil-speaking people. Jaffna is also known for its seafood and its distinctive style of Sri Lankan cooking.
Mihintale is a sacred Buddhist site located in the central part of Sri Lanka. It is believed to be the place where Buddhism was introduced to Sri Lanka in the 3rd century BC. The site is home to a number of Buddhist temples and ruins, as well as a sacred mountain peak.
5. Udawalawe national park
Udawalawe National Park Udawalawe National Park is a national park located in the south-central part of Sri Lanka. The park is home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, leopards, and crocodiles. The park is also a popular spot for birdwatching, with over 400 species of birds recorded in the area.
Discover Sri Lanka- The Goa to the South of India
If you are planning to visit Goa yet again this winter, might we suggest visiting Sri Lanka instead? This captivating island offers a diverse range of experiences, from pristine beaches and lush rainforests to ancient historical sites and vibrant festivals. With abundant wildlife, delicious cuisine, and friendly locals, Sri Lanka is a tapestry of rich South Asian culture and richer nature. Discover the many treasures it has to offer by visiting this beautiful island nation before the free VISA period ends.