Saturday, 30/12/2023 15:19

Top culture and tourism events of the year 2023

The year 2023 witnessed a lot of changes in the world and the nation in 2023. The Culture, Sports, and Tourism sector has worked hard to continue overcoming the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, fostering recovery and development, and advancing the nation's socio-economic growth.

Việt Nam News votes the following events as the most important in the field this year.

1. The 80th anniversary of the “Outline of Vietnamese Culture”

The Outline of Vietnamese Culture was drafted by Party’s late General Secretary Trường Chinh in 1943, and it was published in Tiên Phong (Pioneer) Magazine No 1.  — Photo

The “Outline of Vietnamese Culture” is the first Vietnamese platform on culture launched by the Communist Party of Việt Nam.

In February 1943, the outline was drafted by Party’s General Secretary Trường Chinh and approved at a meeting of the Party Central Committee’s Standing Board.

The outline was based on Marxism, the Party and late President Hồ Chí Minh's guidelines, emphasising that the content, nature, organisation and development orientation of a cultural revolution. The outline highlighted that cultural revolution can only be associated with the national liberation revolution and realised when the political revolution has succeeded.

According to Deputy Culture, Sports and Tourism Minister Tạ Quang Đông, after 80 years, guidelines of the outline still keep their values, supporting orientation for developing Vietnamese culture with advanced features and deep ethnic identity, fulfill the demands of developing the country sustainably in the process of international integration.

Numerous cultural events took place to celebrate the Party’s first outline on culture, including a commemorating ceremony and special art show, workshops, art exhibitions, film week, and a contest on the historical document across the country.

2. Hạ Long Bay-Cát Bà Archipelago recognised as a world natural heritage by UNESCO

Hạ Long Bay-Cát Bà Archipelago cluster boasts a rich diversity of island and ocean ecosystems. Photo courtesy of Hạ Long Bay Management Board.

On September 16, The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) announced that Hạ Long Bay-Cát Bà Archipelago was added to the world natural heritage list at the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee. 

Hạ Long Bay-Cát Bà Archipelago, in the northern province of Quảng Ninh province and neighbouring Hải Phòng city, is Việt Nam's first inter-provincial UNESCO-listed world heritage site. The archipelago had earlier been recognised by UNESCO as a world biosphere reserve.

The site's outstanding scenic beauty is complemented by its great biological interest. The archipelago includes some 1,600 islands and islets featuring spectacular limestone pillars rising from the sea, the eroded notches, arches, and caves creating a picturesque and beautiful landscape. 

It is the habitat of 4,910 species of plants and animals on land and in the sea, and houses the country’s largest maritime forest with an area of more than 17,000 hectares.

Ambassador Lê Thị Hồng Vân, head of the Permanent Mission of Vietnam to UNESCO, said that the recognition affirms international appreciation for the beauty of the heritage and Vietnam's efforts to protect it. 

Việt Nam’s world heritage sites recognised by UNESCO have been making an important contribution to local socio-economic development, as well as to environmental protection, green and sustainable growth, thereby promoting the culture, land, and people of Việt Nam to the world, as well as enriching humanity's cultural treasure.

3. Việt Nam elected member of the World Heritage Committee for 2023 - 2027

The Vietnamese delegation at the 24th session of the General Assembly of States Parties to the World Heritage Convention in Paris on November 22 - 23. VNA/VNS Photo

Việt Nam was elected member of the World Heritage Committee for the 2023 - 2027 tenure on November 22 with the highest number of votes among Asian-Pacific states.

Securing 121 of the 171 valid votes, Việt Nam ranked second among the nine elected states from five regions, said the Department of Cultural Heritage under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

The election took place within the framework of the 24th session of the General Assembly of States Parties to the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (World Heritage Convention) in Paris.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Hà Kim Ngọc, who is also Chairman of the Vietnam National Commission for UNESCO, said this is the second time Việt Nam has been elected to the most important executive body for culture of UNESCO.

The high number of votes also reflected Việt Nam’s prestige in the international arena, the international community’s trust in and support for its contribution and chairmanship capacity at global multilateral institutions, as well as the recognition of the country’s practical contributions to UNESCO and the preservation and promotion of heritage values in Việt Nam and the world, he added.

4. Golden imperial seal handed over to Việt Nam from France

The golden imperial seal of Hoàng Đế Chi Bảo (Treasure of the Emperor) was handed over to Việt Nam at a ceremony held at the Vietnamese Embassy in France, November 16, VNA/VNS Photo Nguyễn Thu Hà 

The Nguyễn Dynasty's golden imperial seal of Hoàng Đế Chi Bảo (Treasure of the Emperor) was handed over to Việt Nam at a ceremony held at the Vietnamese Embassy in France on November 16.

This came as a result of more than one year of negotiation and implementation of legal procedures on halting the open auction of the seal, cast in 1823 under the reign of King Minh Mạng, in Paris in November 2022, and handing over the object to Việt Nam at the country’s request.

According to the Department of Cultural Heritage under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the imperial seal is an important cultural heritage symbolising political power in a period of Việt Nam’s history and also marking the transition from monarchy to the people’s democracy in the Hồ Chí Minh era.

The collection and repatriation of the golden seal are aimed at not only perfecting the collections of antiquities, treasures and cultural heritage elements illegally transported abroad but also affirming the country’s stature and influence. The move also shows the Party and State’s judicious policy of preserving and bringing into play cultural heritage values to meet people’s growing cultural enjoyment demand, promote national pride, and develop an advanced Vietnamese culture deeply imbued with national identity and contributing to the world’s cultural heritage.

5. A year of success and promise for the film industry

The 23rd Việt Nam National Film Festival held biennially in Đà Lạt City, Central Highland Province of Lâm Đồng in November is the biggest event of the national cinema industry.

With the slogan "Building a Vietnamese film industry rich in national identity, modernity, and humanity", the film festival honoured cinematographic works and individuals, and brought films to audiences, as well as served as a bridge between cinema and tourism to create great spiritual values and promote economic development.

Director Bùi Thạc Chuyên and the crew of Tro Tàn Rực Rỡ (Glorious Ashes) have won Golden Lotus Award; the best director; the best supporting actor and the best film score.

International-award winning documentary Những Đứa Trẻ Trong Sương (Children of The Midst) by Hà Lệ Diễm also won Golden Lotus Award and the best director award for its director Hà Lệ Diễm. 

The 23rd film festival attracted a record number of nearly 180 film entries, the most ever in different genres.

Director Bùi Thạc Chuyên (second from left) receives the best director at the 23rd Việt Nam National Film Festival. Photo

Writer-director Phạm Thiên Ân put his name on the world cinema map with the Camera d'Or award for the first feature film at Cannes Film Festival. Ân wrote the script and made his first-time feature film Bên Trong Tổ Kén Vàng (Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell) in 2020. It took four years to complete the movie, with three shootings in 2020, 2021 and 2022.

Ân was born in Lâm Đồng Province in 1989 and graduated in Information Technology from Lotus University in HCM City. He shifted to film because of personal interest and won some awards, including in the 48 Hours Film Project in HCM City and top prize at the CJ Short Film Making Project, one of the top short film contests in Việt Nam.

6. The cultural industry has achieved many outstanding accomplishments. Hội An, Đà Lạt join UNESCO Creative Cities Network

Tourists explore the Old Quarter of Hội An at night. The town is decorated by lanterns every night. Photo courtesy of the Centre for Cultural Heritage Management

On the occasion of World Cities Day (31st October), the Director General of UNESCO signed a Decision to recognise Đà Lạt and Hội An and 53 other cities around the world to officially join UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN).

Thus, after Hà Nội became a UNESCO Creative City in the field of design in 2019, Việt Nam has a Creative City of Music and a Creative City of Crafts and Folk Arts in 2023.

For Đà Lạt, becoming a UNESCO Creative City in the field of music is good news in the context of 2023, the city celebrates 130 years of formation and development. The city hopes that alongside tourism, the potential of cultural industries, especially music, will play a core role in promoting international integration, sustainable urban development, connecting social groups, and enhancing the quality of life for its residents.

Meanwhile, with a rich, diverse, and unique cultural capital crystallised from hundreds of years of history, being the intersection of many cultures, Hội An is considered a place to nurture the creative spirit of Vietnamese people. Promoting the East - West connection tradition and actively using creative solutions to position its international brand, Hội An believes that the city will become a focal point in Asia, spreading peace through sustainable creativity.

The participation of these cities in the UCCN reflects international recognition and high appraisal of Việt Nam's efforts and commitment to promoting cultural creativity and developing cultural resources.

7. Việt Nam's tourism has been highly evaluated internationally, receiving many awards from the World Travel Awards in 2023. 

Việt Nam is honoured as Asia’s Leading Destination for 2023 from the World Travel Awards. Photo Courtesy of Tourism Information Technology Centre

This is the 5th time Việt Nam has been crowned as “Asia’s Leading Destination”, including 3 consecutive years (2018, 2019, 2021, 2022, 2023), affirming the brand and special attraction of Việt Nam. 

Việt Nam National Authority of Tourism has been titled for the 4th time as “Asia’s Leading Tourist Board”, proving the outstanding efforts of the National Authority of Tourism in resuming and recovering Việt Nam tourism post the COVID-19 pandemic, making Việt Nam tourism a bright spot in the region and in the world.

Notably, the capital city Hà Nội won “Asia's Leading City Destination 2023” and "Asia's Leading City Break Destination 2023” awards. Meanwhile, Hồ Chí Minh City won “Asia’s Leading Business Travel Destination” and “Asia's Leading Festival & Event Destination 2023” awards.

At the same time, Hội An was honoured as Asia's Leading Cultural City Destination 2023, while Mộc Châu was named Asia’s Leading Regional Nature Destination 2023. Phú Quốc Island won the "Asia's Leading Luxury Island Tourism Destination 2023" award. The northernmost border province of Hà Giang for the first time won the title “Asia’s Leading Emerging Tourism Destination”. Northern Hà Nam province received the award for “Asia's Leading Regional Cultural Destination 2023” for the first time. — VNS

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