Making Lam Dong Key Tourist Centre in Central Highlands

10:30:08 AM | 28/12/2015

On April 8, 2013 in Lam Dong province, the Chairman of the Lam Dong Provincial People’s Committee signed Decision 673/QD-UBND ratifying the deployment of Vietnam Tourism Development Strategy to 2020, with a vision to 2030, in the province. Ms Nguyen Thi Nguyen, Director of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Lam Dong, said, with this tourism development strategy, Lam Dong province will effectively exploit natural advantages, cultural values, heritages and traditional history to develop the sustainable and high-quality tourism industry and turn tourism into a driving economic sector of the province and a key tourist centre in the Central Highlands. Kim Bang-Minh Tuan report.
Could you please briefly describe the potential, strengths and key features of Lam Dong tourism?
Lying on Lam Vien Plateau at an altitude of 1,500 metres, Da Lat and Lam Dong have fresh air, cool climate and dreamlike landscape shaping unique scenery and ecosystems. Lam Dong also has ideal natural conditions and soil for developing agriculture, especially smart agriculture. This is a tourism resource being tapped to form a new tourism model called agritourism to meet tourists’ demands for new experiences.
Da Lat - Lam Dong is safekeeping historical, cultural and architectural monuments, villas and palaces (Palace I, Palace II, Palace III, Da Lat Railway Station, Pedagogical College, etc.). Specially, Lam Dong is preserving two world heritages recognised by the UNESCO, namely Nguyen Dynasty Woodblocks and the Space of Gong Culture in the Vietnam Highlands. Most recently, Bidoup - Nui Ba National Park was recognised as a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. Being home to over 40 ethnic groups, Lam Dong is rich in traditional cultural and architectural values and unique folklore festivals. These favourable conditions enable Lam Dong to develop and diversify tourism forms such as festival tourism, agritourism and cultural tourism to attract domestic and foreign tourists.
To create competitive advantages for the tourism industry, Lam Dong province has strengthened its cooperation with other provinces and cities in the country. Would you mind introducing some remarkable cooperation programmes the province has carried out?
To promote its strengths in localised tourism products and boost cooperation, introduce and create new products to draw the fancy of visitors, with the support of the Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial People’s Committee, the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Lam Dong Province has carried out many tourism development cooperation programmes with other localities, primarily focusing on tourism investment, marketing, product development and human resources training. To boost cooperation, Lam Dong province has actively cooperated with partner localities to alternately organise review programmes to work out solutions to address shortcomings and apply effective solutions for the upcoming years. There are many very effective cooperation programmes, including the Lam Dong - Binh Thuan - Ho Chi Minh City Development Triangle Programme and Lam Dong - Khanh Hoa Tourism Development Cooperation Programme. Partner localities regularly exchange and share experience in product development investment in order to avoid the replication of major tourism products and services; announce joint annual events to attract more tourists; address difficulties arising from cooperation stage, including upgrading and repairing of intercity transport systems to facilitate travelling. With those efforts, tourist arrivals in Lam Dong province have risen 10.42 per cent annually on average since 2011.
With these cooperation programmes, local tourism businesses have also actively introduced their products, tours and routes to customers and created new products and routes reaching other localities via local events in Lam Dong province like National Tourism Year 2014 - Highlands - Da Lat, biennial Da Lat Flower Festival, and tourism conferences and fairs. In recent years, Lam Dong has organised many international tourism seminars and programme; received Famtrip and Presstrip delegations from other countries to explore and report on tourism in Da Lat and Lam Dong.
Tourism cooperation programmes between Lam Dong province and other localities have brought about practical results and contributed significantly to introducing Lam Dong tourism to regional and world markets.
How has Lam Dong province attracted investment capital for tourism?
To improve investment efficiency, the Lam Dong Provincial People's Committee issued Decision 09/2008/QD-UBND dated March 20, 2008 on the order of investment attraction procedures, mechanisms and policies, publicity and simplification of administrative procedures in order to provide favourable conditions for investors to carry out their investment projects to diversify tourism products and services. To date, the province has licensed 224 tourism projects with a total registered capital of VND69,500 billion. Some important projects have been put into operation (e.g. Sacom Golf Course, Da Ron Golf Course, Terracotta Resort, Edensse Resort, Dalat Star Resort, and Cu Lan Village Resort) to generate new tourism products for the province. Many projects are now underway, including (Dankia - Da Lat Resort and Dai Ninh Ecological Resort).
Tourism businesses have actively invested in upgrading their products and services and enhancing service quality. Tourism infrastructure has been increasingly expanded and upgraded. Thus far, the province is home to 33 tourist destinations, 45 tour operators and transporters and 900 hotels with 14,366 rooms.
What will the tourism industry of Lam Dong province focus on in the coming time to carry out the Vietnam Tourism Development Strategy to 2020, with a vision to 2030?
The Central Highlands Tourism Development Strategy in general and the Lam Dong Tourism Development Plan in particular define as key tasks diversifying tourism products and services and creating new and competitive products. Accordingly, Da Lat - Lam Dong will focus on planning and developing advantageous tourism products like ecotourism, forest discovery, adventure sports, sightseeing and recreation.
Major tourist destinations in the province will continue to be invested and developed to generate high-quality products and services and build tourism products based on local legends and history. The province will create conditions favourable for investors to speed up their investment projects to create new tourism products and services to draw more tourists and support investors to deal with difficulties in their projects. The province will continue to carry out the Prime Minister’s Decision 1528/QD-TTg dated September 3, 2015 on a number of specific mechanisms and policies for tourism development in Da Lat City, Lam Dong Province to support investment projects in the National Tourism Park; strengthen tourism development cooperation with major tourism destinations like Danang, Quang Nam, Hue, Central Highlands provinces, southern central coast provinces, and southern provinces; and link with potential tours like Central Heritage Road, Central Highlands Green Road, Legendary Ho Chi Minh Trail, and Return to Old Battlefield.
In the coming time, in addition to promoting the domestic market, Lam Dong will focus on approaching international markets such as Thailand, South Korea, China, Japan and Russia and open direct flights from ASEAN countries to Lam Dong to increase the number of international visitors and expand international tourism cooperation with other destinations in the region and in the world.