Hidden gem in Hà Giang faces challenges in tourism development

May 14, 2023 - 21:52
Yên Minh, one of the four mountainous districts in the northern province of Hà Giang, possesses beautiful natural landscapes along with rich and unique cultural heritage treasures. In the district, there are 16 ethnic groups living together, each with its own cultural identity.
A communal event in Yên Minh District, which boasts stunning landscapes and diverse cultural heritage. Photo vov.vn

Minh Dũng

HÀ GIANG — Despite stunning landscapes and diverse cultural heritage, Hà Giang’s Yên Minh District tourism development is hindered by limited accessibility and infrastructure, according to experts at a recent seminar.

The seminar on the promotion of tourism in Yên Minh District held on Saturday attracted a large number of delegates including officials of Yên Minh District, representatives of leaders of Hà Giang Province, travel agencies, members of tourism survey teams and local tourism service providers.

Yên Minh is one of the four mountainous districts in the northern province of Hà Giang, belonging to the UNESCO Global Geopark Đồng Văn Karst Plateau. About 100km from the city centre, the area has relatively difficult traffic conditions.

However, the locality has a prominent feature of beautiful natural landscapes along with rich and unique cultural heritage. In the district, there are 16 ethnic groups living together, each with its own cultural identity. These are the advantages and potentials of the locality in tourism development.

The district has made progress in attracting tourists, especially international visitors. However, tourism development in Yên Minh District still faces many difficulties. Progress on the development of tourism is still slow, available tourist spots have not been utilised, and transportation infrastructure is still limited, according to delegates.

According to Triệu Thị Tình, Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Yên Minh District needs to implement a number of necessary conditions to promote tourism development.

“To further develop, it is necessary to build a cultural identity, landscape, and human resources. In particular, we need to focus on human resource training, improving human resources in the tourism industry here. Besides, we have to think about offering services for tourists to experience and exchange cultural identity and cuisine.”

An overview of the seminar held to promote tourism development in Yên Minh District, Hà Giang Province. VNS Photo Minh Dũng

Lương Duy Doanh, Director of Five Star Travel Trading Co., Ltd - Five Star Travel, said: "Route 4 is not really good, the road and travel for tourists will take a lot of time so we need to invest. In addition, it is necessary to pay more attention to the issue of signposts to facilitate travel for tourists.”

In recent years, the number of tourists to Yên Minh District has increased. In 2022, the total number of guests staying in the district was 89,920, of which, there were 19,466 international visitors and 70,454 domestic tourists. In the first four months of 2023, over 50,000 travellers came to visit Yên Minh. From now until the end of the year, Yên Minh District aims to attract 150,000 tourists.

Cultural and tourism space opens in Yên Minh

The two-day Cultural and Tourism Space in Yên Minh District opened on Friday with a variety of activities.

The event aims to preserve the unique culture of ethnic minorities in the district and promote the image of the people as well as the land of Yên Minh to a large number of domestic and foreign tourists, according to local officials.

A music performance at the opening ceremony of the festival held on Friday. VNS Photo Minh Dũng

This event contributes to preserving and promoting the cultural heritage here, associated with sustainable tourism development and economic development.

The highlight of the event is a special art programme imbued with indigenous ethnic identity. Through art performances, delegates and visitors can understand more about the cultural characteristics of each ethnic group in the district.

Within the framework of the programme, the organisers arranged exhibition booths including costumes, labour tools, and consumer products of ethnic minorities. At the same time, typical agricultural products and handicrafts are displayed to promote trade. This is an opportunity for Yên Minh District to promote and introduce potential and strengths in tourism development to domestic and international tourists.

Local residents introduce their products at the festival. VNS Photo Minh Dũng

At the opening ceremony of the event, visitors could experience the lively cultural space, as well as immerse themselves in the culture of ethnic minorities of Yên Minh District. Indigenous people are also very excited about this event.

Hoàng Anh Tuấn, standing vice chairman of the People's Committee of Yên Minh District, said: "Yên Minh District will have policies such as strengthening the promotion of regional-specific products. The focus for tourism in Yên Minh is tourism associated with agriculture. We organise a cultural tourism space for visitors to know about the people and diversity of national identity in our district.” — VNS