‘Colombo Dunes’ ATV adventure centre up and running in Port City
Daily FT: Colombo’s first-ever sand dune ATV adventure centre ‘Colombo Dunes’ was inaugurated yesterday at the Colombo Port City, with the public able to make bookings starting today. Managed by Crate Adventures Ltd., Colombo Dunes seeks to fill the adventure tourism-sized hole in the market.
“At ‘Colombo Dunes’ by Crate Adventure in Port City Colombo, one can unleash their adventurous self on the multiple tracks situated in the heart of Colombo,” states a media release.
“Drive the ATVs through sand dunes and experience a one-of-a-kind beach ride on Sri Lanka’s only artificial beach. The special purpose-built trailer will provide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for families and senior citizens to explore Sri Lanka’s first man-made beach while the youth enjoy the adrenaline-rushing experience of riding through the dunes.”
On offer at the moment are three separate adventure tracks – beginner, intermediate and expert level. Having tried the first two, Daily FT can confirm that there is a distinct difference in difficulty between the two, with the second, in particular, replete with several sharp turns and the odd sharp drop. It is also, crucially, a lot of fun.
Riding the ATVs themselves require no prior experience nor a driving licence; all that is required is a signing of a waiver and a brief tutorial on the acceleration and brake mechanisms.
As highlighted in the media release, Crate Adventure has joined hands with “the world’s leading ATV manufacturer, a North American company, Can-Am by BRP,” to feature “top-in-the-class, high-end ATVs that exceed client expectations”.
Crate Adventure is not new to the Sri Lankan market though, having been formed in late 2017, before being officially launched on 4 January 2018. The initial centre, which is still active, was based in Gampaha.
“Known as ‘Colombo Mountain’, this is an adventure seeker’s hotspot nestled in rocky mountain terrain,” noted the release.
“At the time of launch, this was South Asia’s First ATV Adventure Park. This ATV track located in natural forest terrain is home to a great deal of fauna and flora, rock caves and panoramic 360-degree lookout points, from where one could even see the Colombo skyline.”
The official website and booking facility were launched yesterday, with the public able to lock down their ATV excursions by visiting crateadventure.com. Rates range upwards from Rs. 6,900 per person, which includes three rides.
Speaking at the event, Chief Guest Sports and Youth Minister Namal Rajapaksa spoke of how ventures such as that brought forth by Crate Adventure fit into Sri Lanka’s overall plans for creating a billion-dollar sporting economy in the coming years.
“In our history, we have always been dependent on the Government and we have not concentrated on the sporting economy. It has always been supported or sponsored by the Government, but now what we’re looking at is creating a billion-dollar industry,” said Rajapaksa.
“At the same time, we’re looking for more sporting activities to take place in our country, especially in relation to water sports, hiking, tracking and now adventure sports. We believe this is a great investment for us as a ministry, to promote more adventure sports and attract people who are interested in adventure sports to Sri Lanka for holidays.”
Sri Lankan authorities are focused on expanding the country’s tourist attraction with special emphasis on adventure and sports tourism. Sri Lanka’s overall tourism industry is once again on the path to recovery after facing the pandemic impact. There has been a steady increase in tourist arrivals to the country with international airlines also increasing the number of flights operated to Sri Lanka. The country’s tourism authorities have also launched a massive promotional campaign to boost the tourism industry in key international source markets. With Sri Lanka being listed as a must visit destination by leading global travel publications and being slotted among the Top 10 island destinations, the island has attracted the attention of many foreign travellers. Also, the internationally recognised safety and hygiene certifications received by Sri Lanka’s airports have made the island an attractive post Covid travel destination. Given the growth momentum shown by Sri Lanka’s tourism industry, foreign businesses/investors could explore the opportunities in the industry.
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