Dong Thap to Focus on Potential Tourism Development

12:19:13 AM | 29/8/2014

Dong Thap is considered a locality with special natural landscapes and charming rivers carrying traits of the wetland of the wild Dong Thap Muoi. The province has many famous places to visit and typical tourism products of the land of waters. These are favourable conditions to promote the development of the province's tourism in the future.
Formation of key tourism destinations
In the past years, Dong Thap tourism has made significant progress and become an important economic sector in the province. Tourism areas, especially key tourism areas, have gradually been formed and developed. Currently, Dong Thap has many famous tourist places in and outside the country such as the tomb relic of Junior Doctor Nguyen Sinh Sac, Xeo Quyt Relic Zone, Gao Giong eco-tourism zone, Go Thap Relic zone, Dong Sen - Thap Muoi tourism zone, Tram Chim National Park, Huynh Thuy Le ancient house, and others.
In addition, Dong Thap has many significant traditional villages in the areas such as Sa Dec glass flower village, Chau Thanh exported ceramic products and specialties including springroll, Sa Dec rice noodle, Sa Giang shrimp chips, and famous orchards. In particular, the traditional culture of the South and the rustic meals are also seen as one of the attractions bringing a number of tourists to Dong Thap.
With the strengths of the locality, Dong Thap has enhanced tourism infrastructure investment in a concentrated manner, exploited new and attractive tourism products rich in nature of culture and friendly with ecological environment and focused on improving service quality, creating an important premise for resorts to operate more effectively and initially building the tourism brand "Dong Thap as pure as the soul of lotus." In 2013, Dong Thap welcomed and served more than 1.7 million visitors. This suggests that tourism activities of Dong Thap have made the right choice in the right direction, gradually promoting the tourism potential in the province.
To shape and develop existing resorts, Mr Ngo Quang Tuyen, Deputy Director of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Dong Thap, said that in the past time, the Department focused on improving the image of the locality, promoting indigenous cultural values and available strengths and cooperates with other localities in the region and across the country. The Department has initially built the province's tourism brand and attracted attention from the local tour operators, tourists and the mass media to promote tourism in Dong Thap.
However, to build a strong tourism brand to visitors and make a difference compared to the tourism products of other localities in the region, the tourism industry of Dong Thap should make products for each area and tourism destination with the slogan "The smile of tourists is the success of the province’s tourism."
Development of specific tourism products
Although there is significant growth every year, there remain limitations in Dong Thap’s tourism. Particularly, the amount of guests staying, especially international visitors, is not large compared to some other provinces in the region. The main reason is because the traffic is not convenient for connecting tours with the provinces in the region; lack of technical facilities and high quality services and entertainment. In addition, tourism products are crude, rather monotonous and low quality of human resources, which are also barriers making tourism develop not in accordance with the province’s potential.
Therefore, to develop tourism in the near future, the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Dong Thap has identified the investment and development of tourism potential in the province as one of the key tasks to make tourism a key economic sector of the province.
Typical tourism products of Dong Thap are seasonal ecotourism, river tourism, experience tourism, villages and culinary. In particular, experience tourism is considered a speciality of Dong Thap province. According to Mr Ngo Quang Tuyen, Dong Thap is located in the Mekong River’s watershed flowing into Vietnam and one of the three provinces of Dong Thap Muoi region famous worldwide, with waterway transportation convenient for trade with many countries in the region. At the same time, the locality has spectacular scenery, cultural tradition, rich history, and many traditional villages with talented artists. These are considered unique resources for the province to exploit and develop experience tourism.
Moreover, this type of tourism is competitive, attracting the attention and tends to develop well because its products are unlikely to be overlapped, thus do not cause boredom. Tourists coming to visit will enjoy experience of living everyday life of the indigenous people to explore their culture, tradition, customs and habits of each local region.
In addition, the province has also developed experience travel programs associated with well-known tourist destinations. Typically are the program "Spring of Dong Thap" which takes Sa Dec ornamental flower village and Lai Vung citrus garden as the emphasis; program "Experience a job a day" which takes Lai Vung springroll villages, ornamental flower, pottery, and weaving mats as the emphasis. In particular, Dong Thap tourism has developed and piloted five experience travel program in flooding season in Tram Chim National Park, attracting over 2,000 visitors. This highlight product has attracted the attention of many tour operators, especially those from Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, to participate in introducing, selling, offering visitors, contributing to promoting the image of local tourism.
It can be seen that experience tourism plays an important role and continues to strengthen its position with synchronized solutions of the tasks and strategic solutions for tourism development scheme of Dong Thap in the 2015 - 2020 period. The draft scheme contributes a comprehensive assessment of the current status of tourism resource system in Dong Thap to concretize the strengths of local tourism in relation to the Mekong Delta tourism. Besides, the speed of urbanization and economic restructuring from agriculture to industry, trade and services is also one of the factors making experience tourism more attracting, especially for urban tourists. From here, tourism of Dong Thap will make developments consistent with its potential, creating momentum for the rapid and sustainable development of the industry in the future.