|A tourist visits Xuan Son National Park. The local authority plans to make the national park a major tourist attraction, which is expected to receive about 15,000 domestic and international tourists by 2015. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Ha
PHU THO (VNS)— Xuan Son National Park in the northern midland province of Phu Tho boasts diverse ecosystems, untouched natural beauty and original cultural identities of ethnic people.
Recently, the park has been absorbing investment to make it a tourism hotspot and help drive the locality's socio-economic growth.
About 120km from Ha Noi, Xuan Son National Park covers more than 15,000 hectares. It is the 12th largest national park in Viet Nam with 84 per cent forest coverage.
With pure water and clean air, temperatures in Xuan Son average 22-23 degrees Celsius all year round. One day at the park sees the four seasons: the morning is as cool as spring, noon is as warm as summer, the wind in the afternoon is as gentle as in autumn and the evening has a little winter coldness.
The park is home to 365 animal species, including 46 listed in Viet Nam's Red Book and 18 others in the World Red Book. Xuan Son is home to typical species of the northwestern region such as langurs, gibbons, civets, squirrels, bears, leopards, pheasants and peacock pheasants.
The park has 726 species of vascular plants. At the intersection of flora from Indo-Malaysia and China's Huanan regions, Xuan Son's vegetation is dominated by chestnut trees, oaks and magnolias, alongside typical plants of the northwestern region.
Besides its rich flora and fauna, the park also boasts numerous striking natural landscapes like three 1,000m plus peaks as well as hundreds of caves, streams and waterfalls.
Additionally, ethnic groups residing in the park maintain their own culture in costumes, festivals, handicrafts, brocades, dance and cuisine.
Xuan Son together with Tam Dao in Vinh Phuc province and Ba Vi in Ha Noi form a triangle of spectacular landscapes and legendary sites.
Thanks to theses advantages, it is favourable to develop numerous types of tourism like eco-tourism, adventure, medical and community tourism.
However, the site's tourism business is spontaneous and lacks a concrete plan and orientation, so it has been unable to draw large numbers of visitors or earn healthy profits.
In the short term, the Phu Tho provincial People's Committee is focusing on developing essential infrastructure in Xuan Son National Park.
A number of preferential policies have also been issued to call upon businesses to invest in rural and mountainous areas which have potential for tourism.
Many projects are being fast-tracked, for example, a VND84 billion (US$4 million) project to build a route linking Lap hamlet – Tho Than cave – Na cave – Lung Troi waterfall; a VND105 billion project to construct a tourist information centre, lodging, a nature museum and roads; and a VND6.7 trillion project to build a 54-km road connecting the park and the temple of the Hung Kings who founded Viet Nam thousands years ago.
The province has worked out a plan for the construction of a cable route linking Mount Voi, Mount Ten and Mount Can, offering tourists a clear view over Hoa Binh and Son La hydro-power plants, Tam Dao tourism site and the Hung Kings temple.
The investment in Xuan Son National Park is aimed at reducing poverty and tapping the existing potential of the locality. It expects to receive 15,000 Vietnamese and foreign tourists by 2015 and 30,000 by 2020. — VNS