Tourist attractions in central Laos are on show at a festival from December 12 to 16 as part of a joint promotion between Vientiane, Xaysomboun, Borikhamxay, Khammuan, and Savannakhet provinces, along with the capital.
Dansavanh Nam Ngum Resort in Vientiane province is the stage for the cultural shows and product displays related to tourism services and development.
Other activities scheduled during the festival include parades, cultural performances, Lao food events, a beauty contest, boat racing, golf, petanque and sightseeing boat rides. Tourism officials and experts are also meeting to share experiences on tourism development and management.
At the event’s opening ceremony yesterday, Deputy Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Ounthouang Khaophanh noted the government had highlighted tourism as one of the key strategies in developing the country’s economy over the short and longer term because it was creating jobs and generating income for urban and rural communities.
“The Lao government has a policy to develop and improve nature-based tourism or “Green Tourism” in parallel with the development of natural, cultural, and historical attractions,” Mr Ounthouang told the ceremony, with diplomatic representatives from neighbouring countries in attendance.
More than 2,700,000 foreigners visited the country in 2011 and generated US$406 million for the nation while last year the number of foreign arrivals reached 4.6 million, generating US$725 million.
About 2.6 million foreigners visited the five provinces and the capital in the period from January to September this year with Vientiane recording the largest number of foreign arrivals as it’s the gateway and starting point for trips into the country.
Vientiane province has popular Vangvieng with its beautiful nature such as Xong River and various caves. The large Nam Ngum dam with its many islands is another beautiful tourist highlight in the province.
Phou Bia Mountain and Chao Anouvong Cave in Xaysomboun; Vat Phabath temple, Vat Phonsanh temple and Tad Yong rapids in Borikhamxay; Sikhottabong stupa and Tham Konglor Cave in Khammuan, while That Inhang stupa, Nong Lom and Dong Natad nature sites, and Dinosaur Museum in Savannakhet are some of the hundreds of tourist attractions throughout the provinces.
Vientiane province Vice Governor, Mr Bounsone Phetlavanh noted the importance of building joint tourism promotions among the provinces and capital, and developing visitor services.
He said it was vitally important the five provinces and the capital developed tourism sites while lifting the quality standards of tourism services.
Speaking at the ceremony, Dansavanh Namgum Resort President Mr U Wang Yong said he would use the festival to extol the virtues of the beautiful Nam Ngum River landscape and activities such as Nam Ngum Rural Golf Club, boat rides, water recreation park as well as the five-star hotel.
Source: Vientiane Times