The month recorded 146,575 tourists arriving in the country compared to the 110,543 arrived in January 2013.
The numbers were helped by Chinese tourists that flocked to the tropical island in January. Last year's 3,328 arrivals from China grew to 10,779 in January 2014, which is a 223.9 percent increase, according to Sri Lanka Tourism Development Board data.
Arrivals from North America rose by 22.4 percent with 6,909 visitors for the month of January. Tourist arrivals from the U.S. increased 31.5 percent in January while 12.7 percent more arrived from Canada.
Tourist arrivals from Western Europe reached 46,301 during the first month of the year rising 17.9 percent.
Arrivals from Eastern Europe increased 63.6 percent with the arrival of 24,837 tourists for the month while arrivals from Russia topped 10,700 rising by 91.6 percent.
Tourist arrivals from Middle East rose in January by 9.7 percent to 6,842.
However the largest number of arrivals remained from South Asia increasing by 14.6 percent in January 2014 with 28,392 tourists visiting the island while arrivals from India increased only 5.6 percent 17,886 in the first month.
Sri Lanka met its tourist arrival target of 1.2 million for the year 2013 with the numbers rising by 26.7 percent in 2012, earning 1.23 billion U.S. dollars in the first 11 months of 2013.
The island hopes to attract 2.5 million tourists by 2016.