Friday, 15/04/2011 09:34

VN seeks Ha Long Bay votes

The Viet Nam National Administration of Tourism has printed 2 million voting guides to promote Ha Long Bay during this year's vote for the seven new natural wonders of the world.

The guides will be handed out to Vietnamese and foreigners through travel companies, embassies, foreign agencies and airlines.

New Open World is set to announce the new list on November 11 and voting for the sites ends on October 31. To vote for the bay, visit

HCM City lists top tourism sites

The HCM City Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism and HCM City Tourism Association have announced the best travel firms, hotels, travel websites, shopping venues and tourism service providers in the City.

The usual suspects – Saigontourist Travel Service, Fiditourist, Ben Thanh Tourist, and Vietravel – all make it to the lists of 10 best inbound and outbound tour operators.

Except Fiditourist the others also make it into the top five in the website category along with Viet Media Travel and TST Tourist.

The five best five-star and four-star hotels and 10 best three-star hotels were also named.

The top 10 shopping venues include Tax Plaza, Vincom Centre, Zen Plaza, Miss Aodai, Parkson, XQ Sai Gon, Khaisilk and PNJ Jewellery shops.

The lists were compiled to mark HCM City Tourism Day.

Travel firm urges visa extensions

APEX Travel Co has asked authorities to allow Japanese tourists to stay for up to 60 days without an entry visa instead of the current 15 days.

Nguyen Van Tran, APEX's general director, said with Japan still reeling from its worst ever disaster, the travel industry wants longer stays to woo Japanese visitors back.

Many Japanese travellers cancelled foreign tours after the earthquake and tsunami struck on March 11.

According to VNAT, some 43,500 Japanese visitors visited Viet Nam last month, a year-on-year increase of 10 per cent but 8.6 per cent down from the previous month.

Tran said VNAT has backed his recommendation.

European Food Festival popular

About 1,100 people attended the fifth European Food Festival organised by the European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) at the German International School in HCM City's Tan Binh District last Saturday.

EuroCham chairman Alain Cany said this year the event drew more Vietnamese families than in the past to sample authentic specialities like German sausages, Italian lasagne, and baguettes and pizzas.

Besides food and drinks, participants were treated to live entertainment and a magic show.

Hue to host craft festival

The first Hue Traditional Craft Festival 2011 to be held from April 30 to May 3 will be themed "Vietnamese Kitchen in Hue Ornamental Garden".

It will be held at three venues – Ngo Mon (Noon Gate) Square, Dai Noi (Imperial Citadel), and on the bank of the Huong (Perfume) River – and showcase Hue's distinctive traditional cuisine and ornamental plants.

It will feature southern amateur music and Khmer dance and folk music.

The "Northern Food and Recipes" section will offer Ha Noi specialities, folk games, and ca tru (ceremonial singing) and hat xam (songs of blind buskers) performances.

The "Hue Vegetarian Food" section will introduce royal dishes, Hue sweet puddings, rice, and cakes and teach people how to cook Hue food.

Visitors flock to eco-tourism sites

The Hung Kings Anniversary holiday saw more people visiting eco-tourist sites in the Mekong Delta like Cai Rang Floating Market, Bang Lang Bird Sanctuary, and My Khanh Tourist Village.

My Khach Eco-Tourism Co Ltd said the village received 2,000 guests each on April 10 and 11, and more than 3,000 on April 12, 40 per cent higher than on normal days. — VNS

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