Hanoi tourism sector is working to change the perception that many tourists have seen it as a stopover to visit other places in the northern region.
Creating more cultural events as the city's highlights
|Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi. Photo: Doan Bach.|
Cultural tourism has been regarded as the strength of the capital's tourism for a long time. However, it only includes historical and cultural destinations. There are not many cultural and touristic activities and events to honor and promote this advantage.
Hanoi once hosted events such as flower festival, Hanoi’s trade village festival, ao dai (traditional dress) festival, and so on, but since very long, those events have not been organized.
Recently, several cultural events organized by Hanoi have impressed people such as blossom cherry festival or contemporary folk and cultural heritage festival. But these events are of small scale. Moreover, the blossom cherry festival is also held elsewhere so it is not Hanoi’s own mark.
It is the fact that cultural events are one of the important factors that stimulate tourists to visit and experience. Localities that organize unique cultural and touristic activities usually attract more visitors.
|Ban Flower season in Hanoi. Photo: Doan Bach.|
For example, the buckwheat flower festival in Ha Giang Northern province, the “Flying on the golden season” paragliding festival in Yen Bai Northern province, Danang International Fireworks Festival, Hue Festival, among others that have been held annually, drawing a large number of visitors to the place.
Thereby, the image of the destination has been known more, creating opportunities to attract visitors not only for events but also all year round.
Mr. Truong Quoc Hung, Chairman of the UNESCO Hanoi Travel Club suggested that each month, Hanoi city should organize an event. Hanoi must become the meeting place of the provinces and cities in the country, attracting visitors to the capital.
|President Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum. Photo: Doan Bach.|
Developing MICE service
Hanoi has many three-to five-star world leading brands of accommodation, capable of hosting both local and international events.
In particular, Hanoi also has a number of large-scale conference centers, such as the National Conference Center and the International Conference Center, which can organize large events and seminars. With this advantage, MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions) tourism has long been offered in Hanoi.
It has not been a key tourism product of the city and there is a lack of the cooperation of relevant agencies to develop this advantage, according to Mr. Vu The Binh, Vice Chairman of Vietnam Tourism Association.
Other places like Da Nang Central City, Phan Thiet Southern City have successfully invested in MICE tourism. When an international event, conference or seminar is held, the attendants come to Vietnam not only to know about the country, but they would become the messengers spreading the image of Vietnam to their family and friends at home. Therefore, Hanoi should focus on developing this type of tourism.
|MICE service is on offer at Melia Hanoi Hotel. Photo provided by the hotel.|
In fact, the Vietnam International Travel Fair (VITM), held annually in Hanoi, is an evidence of the attraction of MICE tourism. Every year, it welcomes tens of thousands of visitors from dozens of countries, both tour operators and clients
In addition, other international conferences and seminars on foreign affairs, investment, health, education taking place in Hanoi recently also attracted a large number of local and international agencies, organizations and enterprises.
Under the circumstances, Hanoi targets to develop MICE tourism as the typical product of the city. It will also invest to set up a number of key tourist clusters like Son Tay - Ba Vi, Huong Son - Quan Son, Soc mountain - Dong Quan lake, Van Tri - Co Loa.
The city will implement a number of cultural and entertaining tourism products as well as continue to research, innovate, and have many solutions to improve its image and service. When all of these projects are complete, Hanoi will become an appealing destination that keeps visitors longer.