Nghe An has many advantages to develop tourism, from natural landscapes to historical culture. However, the achieved results are not really meeting the potential. Therefore, for stronger tourism development and to make it a spearhead economic sector of the province, the tourism industry must actively overcome limitations and remove bottlenecks to break through success.
Many tourism advantages
Tourists coming to Nghe An province flock mostly to some traditional tourist attractions such as Kim Lien Relic Site, Cua Lo Town, etc. Only Kim Lien Relic Site welcomed over two million arrivals of visitors, including nearly one million international visitors in 2018. Cua Lo town received nearly 2.8 million arrivals of visitors, reaching 103% of the year plan and staying guests reached 1.56 million arrivals. Revenue from tourism services reached VND2,851 billion, reaching 106% of the year plan. Some destinations such as Truong Bon historical site, Muong Thanh Dien Lam ecological area, Con Cuong community tourism, Pu Mat National Park and Thanh Chuong green tea island often attract large numbers of tourists. The whole province, in 2018, welcomed and served over six million tourism arrivals, earning over VND7.4 billion.
However, this result is not really commensurate with the tourism potential of Nghe An. With diverse terrain, Nghe An not only has hills, waterfalls and national parks, but also owns marine resources. Nghe An has 82km of coastline, many beautiful beaches like Cua Lo, Dien Thanh and Quynh Beach, the Western Biosphere Reserve recognized by UNESCO as a World Biosphere Reserve, and Pu Mat National Park, which nurtures the most rare and precious animal and plant species in the country.
Besides, Nghe An has more than 2,600 historical sites and scenic spots, of which 413 monuments are ranked at national and provincial level. In particular, there are three relics, Kim Lien Relic Site (Nam Dan District), Phan Boi Chau Memorial House and Hoanh Son Communal House which have been recognized as special national cultural and historical relics.
Meanwhile, Uncle Ho's village is also home to six ethnic groups including the Kinh, Thai, Tho, H'Mong, Kho Mu, O du with many unique cultural features and still retaining the traditional culture values with rich identity.
With many advantages of natural landscapes as well as cultural history, Nghe An will have many opportunities to push tourism to develop more strongly if it overcomes the existing limitations and builds a methodical long-term strategy for development.
The limitations that Nghe An tourism faces are mainly unsynchronized infrastructure, less attractive tourism products and services, lack of creativity and promotion, unmethodical tourism communication and inability to make impression to attract tourists. In addition, the work of protecting the environment and conserving natural resources is not really effective.
Speaking at the seminar "the North- Central Tourism Connection 2019" held in Cua Lo recently, Mr. Ho Xuan Phuc, Director of Hanotours, said that in order to develop Nghe An tourism, the province should first enhance attracting strategic investors to participate in the development of service areas, tourist complexes, entertainment and recreation areas, resorts, ecotourism, luxury hotels and shopping centers. Besides, the province should raise awareness and innovate thinking about tourism development, as well as adjust plans for tourism development towards professionalism, modernity and sustainable development. At the same time, it is necessary to build a policy mechanism to promote tourism development, to invest in developing infrastructure and technical facilities for tourism.
“It is also important to build new types of tourism, new and creative tourism products to keep up with the trend and meet the demands and preferences of visitors. To do that, Nghe An tourism industry needs to seriously research the market, build diverse points and actively link with neighboring localities to attract tourists,” Mr. Phuc emphasized.
Especially emphasizing the importance of organizational and personnel work, Mr. Phung Gia Tuan, Director of America Discovery said that it was necessary to change the mindset, improve the quality of service personnel in the tourism industry in response to new tour quality requirements, thus enhancing local tourism development.
"Human resources in tourism have not improved much, compared to 15 years ago, the people who work in services need to be rejuvenated and specialized in service instead of thinking it simply as a daily job,” Mr. Tuan said.
In addition, according to Mr. Nguyen Van Tai, Director of Vietsense Travel Company, actively communicating and promoting tourism to domestic and international tourists also contributes to a huge number of visitors. With the development of technology 4.0, the popularity of social networks is an opportunity for Nghe An tourism to introduce visitors to the natural beauty, historical culture and friendly and hospitable people. Participating in international exhibitions also promotes Nghe An tourism to a large number of tourists, especially international travel businesses.
To contribute to promoting tourism cooperation, Mr. Tran Trung Hieu, Head of the Accommodation Management Division under Hanoi Tourism Department, said that it was necessary to promote inter-regional connection to effectively exploit the tourism potential of Nghe An. Hanoi Tourism Department is always ready to cooperate with various regions in tourism, including Nghe An.
Mr. Nguyen Manh Cuong, Director of Nghe An Tourism Department agreed on these views, pledging to continue seeking suitable solutions to improve the quality of tourism products, as well as facilitate businesses to promote Nghe An tourism development.