Application of digital technology promotes sustainable tourism hinh anh 1 Ha Van Sieu, deputy head of the Vietnam National Tourism Administration, joins the lacquer painting art tour (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi, (VNA) – Organising events that link arts and tourism using digital technologies, especially in the context of the tourist sector recovery post-COVID-19, is significantly important, Assistant to the Foreign Minister Le Thi Thu Hang has said. 

Joining a Lacquer Painting Art Tour and Networking Reception event held by the Vietnam National Fine Arts Museum, in coordination with the UNESCO Office in Hanoi and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs last weekend, Hang noted that Vietnam is home to eight natural heritage sites and 14 intangible cultural properties recognised by UNESCO

Natural cultural heritage is not only an important resource for cultural diversity and social cohesion but also a driving force for sustainable development, Hang said, noting that Vietnam has committed to promoting sustainable cultural tourism and ensuring a balance between development and cultural heritage preservation.

Sustainable tourism accompanies cultural heritage 

Nguyen Anh Minh, director of the museum, said the Vietnam National Fine Arts Museum, which opened 56 years ago, is one of the national museums playing an important role in storing and promoting national cultural heritage. 

Application of digital technology promotes sustainable tourism hinh anh 2Domestic and foreign tourists at the museum (Photo: VNA)

The museum is preserving more than 2,000 objects, including nine national treasures and other collections, reflecting the development of Vietnamese arts, according to the director. 

Minh said the museum has renewed its exhibition and education activities, paid attention to research and technological application in the management work, built an e-library, used multi-media interpretation, stepped up the communication work, and expanded international cooperation. 

In recent years, the museum has been selected by many embassies and international cultural organisations to introduce its culture to local audiences. 

“We believe that with the companionship of ambassadors, representatives of international organisations, UNESCO, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and representatives of Vietnamese culture and tourism agencies, the values and beauty of Vietnamese cultural heritage, especially fine arts, will be promoted to international audiences,” Minh said. 

New museum experiences 

Vietnam’s fine arts were the first in Asia that engaged in exchange with western styles, right from the beginning of the 20th century.

Participants of the tour explored Vietnam’s lacquer paintings and the stories behind them through iMuseum VFA, a multimedia application featuring high-quality audio, text, and photos, with eight voiceover languages. 

Application of digital technology promotes sustainable tourism hinh anh 3 Digital applications have become familiar to tourists (Photo: VNA)

Available on both Android and iOS, the app is expected to bring the best experiences to tourists. 

Singapore Ambassador to Vietnam Jaya Ratnam said the iMuseum VFA application is extremely useful for foreigners as it helps viewers gain greater insights into Vietnamese culture.

He revealed that the National Museum of Singapore has also utilised a similar app and hopes Singapore and Vietnam will co-operate in this field.

Christian Manhart, Chief Representative of UNESCO Vietnam Office, said UNESCO has worked with experts in the museum and digital technology sectors and received strong commitments from units as well as eight world heritage sites to digital application.

Minh said that digital applications will help to promote Vietnam’s tourism to the world. 

According to a survey on tourism demand and trends amid COVID-19, conducted by the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board (TAB), 40 percent of the respondents preferred online tour booking, and only 12-15 percent chose the traditional booking method via travel firms.

Many localities with tourism strength have proven their dynamism in digital transformation. An example is the central province of Thua Thien-Hue which has signed cooperation documents with businesses such as Vietsoftpro, Tiktok, Viettel VTS and Zalo to promote its tourist sites at home and abroad.

Meanwhile, the central province of Thanh Hoa has piloted a smart travel platform that applies Augmented Reality (AR) technology that empowers travel companies to provide unique and imaginative narratives with virtual tours.

The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism has cooperated with the northern province of Ha Giang in tourism development through digital transformation and smart tourism.

It has also partnered with Google to launch the “Google Arts & Culture – Wonders of Vietnam” project, using Google Arts & Culture – an online platform which allows the public to view high-resolution images and videos of artworks and cultural artefacts throughout the world.

The ‘Wonders of Vietnam’ offers nearly 1,400 images and videos, divided into different topics such as ‘The World’s Largest Cave’, ‘Landmark Bridges’, ‘Deep Green Lagoons’, ‘Ancient History’, and ‘Handmade Heritage’.

Facebook and the Ministry of Planning and Investment have jointly rolled out a tourism programme on social platforms, contributing to promoting Vietnam’s image./.