Domestic tourism surges in first half

Vietnam’s dDomestic tourism surges in first halfomestic tourists reached 24 million in the first half of this year, up by 12 percent against the same period last year, and 73.8 percent of this year’s target.

The domestic tourism market has seen a continuous surge and is now a major driving force accelerating tourism development in Vietnamese localities, said Nguyen Van Tuan, General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, in a recent teleconference to review the sector’s six-month performance.

Notably, Vietnam’s key tourism localities maintained their growth and affirm their leading role in the sector, including Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Ninh Binh, Da Nang, Quang Nam and Binh Thuan, he said.

Over the past time, a range of large-scale tourism facility projects such as international quality hotels and resorts have gone into operation, illustrating the country’s improvement in tourism infrastructure and services, he added.

Vietnam’s progress shows that the country is still an attractive destination in the eyes of investors despite its economic difficulties, he said, adding that Vietnam’s tourism is also highly valued by the international community and tourism experts.

Since the beginning of this year, the sector has been honoured to receive many prestigious international awards.

Hanoi, HCM City, Hoi An (Quang Nam province) and Ha Long (Quang Ninh province) received “Top Destination in Asia” awards from the world’s greatest tourism website

The website also ranked three Vietnamese museums, namely the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City, the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology and the Vietnam Women’s Museum in Hanoi, and the Hon Tam Resort and Residences as the most favourite destinations in Asia.

In addition, street food in Vietnam is regarded as one of the ten most attractive around the world.

The aforesaid reputations help create an encouragement for the domestic tourism’s development as well as show the attractiveness of Vietnamese tourism in the eyes of the international community, Tuan said.

However, the sector still reveals limitations and shortcomings that need to be overcome to improve the country’s tourism environment and promote the friendly, harmonious and hospitable image of Vietnamese tourism.

Among the biggest challenges faced by the sector over the past time were the phenomena of inviting domestic and foreign travellers with insistence and cheating them in major tourist destinations.

Therefore, one of the key missions specified by the sector in this year’s remaining months is to focus on managing the quality of tourism products, reorganising the tourism environment and thoroughly dealing with the above-mentioned phenomena, according to Tuan.

Specifically, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has completed a project on improving the tourism environment and image of Vietnam.

Though the global economic downturn has had negative impacts on tourism in numerous countries, Vietnam still sees an impressive increase in foreign tourists.

The country received more than 3.5 million foreign visitors in the year’s first half, up by 2.6 percent compared to the same period last year. Total earning from tourism reached 105 billion VND (4.9 million USD).

In diversifying tourism products, Vietnam has attached importance to expanding various new tourism models such as land, waterway and sea routes to create a network between destinations in mountainous, highland and delta regions and those in coastal areas and islands.

In addition, the sector has created new specific tourism types, namely walking, mountain climbing, sea-diving, cave discovering, eco-tourism, sports and entertainment, and meetings, incentives, conferencing and exhibitions (MICE) tourism.

Source: Vietnam Plus