Visitors take a boat ride around Tra Su Cajuput Forest in Tinh Bien district, the Mekong Delta province of An Giang. (Source: VNA)

Can Tho (VNA) - The increased cooperation of Mekong Delta provinces helped boost tourism in the whole region, the Mekong Delta Tourism Association claimed.

The tour "Mekong Delta – One destination, four localities +" is a successful result of the cooperation among five provinces – Can Tho, An Giang, Kien Giang, Ca Mau and Kien Giang, said Deputy Head of the association's Coordination Committee Le Thanh Phong. The scheme was launched five years ago, offering tours from HCM City to the five Mekong Delta provinces.

According to the association, the number of visitors to the Mekong Delta and tourism revenue in the last five years increased considerably.

The number of visitors increased from 13 million in 2011 to 21 million this year with average growth of 12 percent per year. The region earned about 4.5 trillion VND (198 million USD) from tourism this year while revenue in 2011 was 2.5 trillion VND (110 million USD).

Phong said that the five provinces strengthened their cooperation to introduce more attractive tourism products.

New tourism products must promote each province's features.

For example, Kien Giang - bordered by An Giang, Hau Giang provinces, Can Tho city in the east and the south - east, Ca Mau province in the south, and Cambodia in the north- has 200km of coastline with large fishing grounds and 105 islands. Its attractions include U Minh forest, temple and tomb of national hero Nguyen Trung Truc in Rach Gia, Tam Bao pagoda, the bird sanctuary, Tan Hoi pagoda and Phu Quoc island.

Phong said that localities need to strengthen cooperation with tour operators and tourism service providers through regular meetings.

Phong called for the five provinces in the Mekong Delta to join organise activities promoting the 2016 National Tourism Year with focus given to Phu Quoc island and the Mekong Delta region.

Deputy Director of Can Tho city's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism Le Minh Son said that they wanted to get more private sector engagement in tourism.

He said that they would also promote the tour "Mekong Delta – One destination, four localities +" and seek new ways to attract tourists.-VNA