Mai Châu aims for 'national destination' status

November 15, 2021 - 11:03
Mai Châu District in Hòa Bình Province plans to diversify tourism, attract investors and promote co-operation with travel agencies to form new tours, enhance service and establish a tourist-friendly environment, to become a national-level destination by 2030.

HÒA BÌNH — Mai Châu District in Hòa Bình Province plans to diversify tourism, attract investors and promote co-operation with travel agencies to form new tours, enhance service and establish a tourist-friendly environment, to become a national-level destination by 2030.

The district has spectacular landscape and clean air. Many villages in the area are beautiful, and have unique stilt-houses. 

A resolution on building Mai Châu District into a national destination by 2020 has guided tourism development in the district in the last few years.

Many effective solutions have been implemented over the last five years. State management of tourism has been enhanced, resulting in high-quality service and better food hygiene.

Foreign tourists at Bước Village in Mai Châu District. VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Hà

After local authorities announced Mai Châu as a national destination in 2020, many investors flocked to the region.

So far, there have been nearly 20 tourism and trade projects approved by the provincial People’s Committee, with total registered capital of VNĐ178 billion (US$7.7 million), over 150 billion of which is from ongoing projects by Thiên Minh Tourism JSC (Mai Châu Town); Sun Hotel & Travel Ltd Co (Chiềng Châu Commune); Mai Châu Travel & Ecology Tourism Ltd Co (Mai Châu Ecolodge); Cha Lang Eco Tourism Project (Mai Châu Villas, Mai Hịch Commune); Avana Project, Suối Tù Tourism Site, Bao La Commune and Piềng Vế Commune; Ba Khan Eco Tourism Ltd Co (Khan Hạ Village, Ba Khan Commune);and Mai Châu Hideaway Resort (Suối Lốn Village, Sơn Thuỷ Commune).

The projects being researched include Tà Xông A Luxury Resort, Bản Lác 3 eco-community tourism site (Chiềng Châu and Nà Phòn communes), Sơn Thủy Commune eco- tourism site, Tà A Sông Luxury Resort (Chà Đáy Village, Pà Cò Commune); Thung A Láng development zone (Hang Kia Commune); Đồng Tân Eco Luxury Resort – International Nursing Centre (Đồng Tân and Bao La communes).

Local authorities have also paid attention to preserving and developing the traditional cultures of ethnic minority groups.

Folk festivals have been restored, such as the Xên Mường Festival of the Thái ethnic group, the Gầu Tào Festival of the Mông group and the Xuân Sơn Động Festival of the Dao group.

Locals join the Gầu Tào Festival of the Mông ethnic minority group in Mai Châu. VNA/VNS Photo 

According to Phạm Văn Hoàn, deputy chairman of the district’s People’s Committee, local authorities have upgraded Lang Bôn Temple, which hosts the Xên Mường Festival, and established an embroidered cloth weaving co-operative in Chiềng Châu Commune, providing financial aid for 138 local folk art teams.

Human resources training in tourism has been promoted with classes for locals.

The province has upgraded traffic infrastructure in Mai Châu for the communes of Chiềng Châu, Nà Phòn, Nà Thia and Mai Châu Town.

Local delicacies, including leaf-fermented wine, local green carp, purple garlic, Sơn Thủy taro and Shan Tuyết ancient tea, are popular with guests.

By December 31, 2020, Mai Châu had 146 places to stay, including 12 hotels, 28 guest houses and 103 community homestays, offering 555 rooms. A total of 1,200 people were employed in tourism.

In 2019, the district received over 379,000 visitors including over 166,000 foreigners, with total tourism income reaching over VNĐ263 billion.

In 2020, there were over 145,000 visitors, including over 12,300 foreigners, with a total income of VNĐ105.9 billion.

In the first half of 2021, some 267,000 people visited, and the total income from tourism was VNĐ222 billion.

“In the next few months, the district will further implement solutions to diversify tourism products; attract investors; develop tourism in key areas; co-ordinate with tourism companies to open more tours and routes; enhance service quality and set up a tourism-friendly environment,” Hoàn said.

Hoàn said human resources were among the most decisive factor for the plan.

“We will co-operate with the central tourism sector to train local tourism workers to prepare for becoming a national destination by 2030.”

According to Nguyễn Đức Trung, founder of Vietview Tourism Company, which brings guests to the area, the district has great natural and cultural potential for developing tourism.

"Foreigners love our tours here, which is not far from the capital and possess spectacular landscapes and strong ethnic minority cultures," he said. "Mai Châu is a representative of Hòa Bình's culture, a luring destination to explore." VNS