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People urged to turn on the charm

People’s hospitality and attitude towards visitors, as well as their courtesy and cleanliness, are vital for the development of Viet Nam’s tourism industry, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said yesterday.

People urged to turn on the charm
People urged to turn on the charm

Speaking at the launch of National Tourism Year 2015 in the central province of Thanh Hoa, he said a concerted effort by concerned agencies and the citizens was needed to develop tourism in the country.

“Viet Nam’s tourism is not just about hotels and resorts or the quality of service but also the Vietnamese people’s friendliness and attitude toward visitors,” the deputy PM said.

“We must strive to give visitors memorable experiences so that when they think of Viet Nam, they will want to come back.

“It is the little things like not littering in public places and giving up seats to the elderly that counts if we are to promote the country’s image as a wonderful destination to meet wonderful people,” he said.

He said that some parts of the tourism sector have not able to promote Viet Nam’s image as a friendly destination and, in some cases, have even left visitors with negative impressions of the country.

The Opening Week for National Tourism Year-Thanh Hoa 2015 is being held in Thanh Hoa from April 3 to 10, and marked by 10 events, which include a requiem for war martyrs; the 50th anniversary of the Ham Rong Victory; the announcement for the Ma River tour; and the Festival of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Viet Nam recognised by UNESCO, have been planned.

Yesterday morning, the Thanh Hoa Province celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Ham Rong Victory (April 3 to 4, 1965 and April 3 to 4, 2015). Former Party General Secretary Le Kha Phieu and the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Hoang Tuan Anh attended the meeting.

The Ham Rong Bridge has a very important location, as it is the only railway bridge built across the Ma River, and therefore was a key target of the U.S. Air Force during the anti-American War.

However, Vietnamese forces bravely fought to protect the bridge, shooting down more than 100 American aircraft in the process.

Speaking at the ceremony, the Thanh Hoa Province People’s Committee Chairman, Nguyen Dinh Xung, reviewed the glorious victory of the army and people and their efforts in defending the bridge half a century ago.

“The Ham Rong victory will always remain a motivation for the provincial military and civilians to build a more prosperous Thanh Hoa,” he said.

Earlier, on Thursday evening, at the Ham Rong Park on the southern bank of Ma River, the Thanh Hoa Province coordinated with the provincial Buddhist organisation to hold a remembrance ceremony for more than 8,000 martyrs and 64 teachers and students, who had laid down their lives in the region during the war.