Ben Tre has enormous potentials in not only agriculture but also tourism. Making full use of the favourable ecosystem, Ben Tre tourism has been developing in a more professional and sustainable manner, making it the local spearhead economic sector.

Ben Tre – home to small islets amid wide rivers of Tien, Co Chien and Ham Luong – is renowned for its rich historic values and orchards, especially coconuts.

Thai Thanh Huyen, a visitor to Ben Tre expressed her delight when visiting the province, saying that she ha​s been familiar with Ben Tre province through various songs. ​She wants my kids to know more about the locality as a home to coconut candy and large rivers, she added.

Another visitor Tran Thi Thuy Vy said: "Visiting Ben Tre, I have a chance to see the most primitive and pristine scenery. I also learn more about the local people’s cool lifestyle."

Potentials in ecosystem, landscape as well as historical and cultural values have been exploited by the provincial government to diversify tourism. Currently, Phung islet is the top tourist attraction of Ben Tre.

According to Tran Duy Phuong, Deputy Director of Ben Tre’s Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Like other Mekong Delta regions, Ben Tre’s tourism is based on orchards, among which, coconuts are the province’s signature.

Phan Van Thong, Director Con Phung Tourist Co., Ltd, Ben Tre Province said that ​each year, Phung islet welcomes more than 5,000 tourists with 30 percent of them foreigners.

There are some 72 tourist attractions across the province with 2,000 qualified accommodations. The province welcomes 1.2 million tourist arrivals annually with foreign visitors accounting for 43 percent.

However, local tourism still faces challenges in terms of infrastructure and traffic. Numerous new bridges like RachMieu, Co Chien and Ham Luong built recentlyhave partly addressed the challenge.The province should diversify tourism products besides merely relying on coconuts to attract more tourists.

Tran Duy Phuong – Deputy Director of Ben Tre’s Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism told reporters that Ben Tre had been focusing on community tourism by promoting homestay services while sea tourism and tours to mangroves were also a focus.

Ben Tre expects to turn tourism into the local spearhead sector by 2030. In order to realise the goal, the province should push tourism promotion and improve tourism service quality.-VNA