The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has re-recognised the Dong Van Karst Plateau Geo-Park in the northernmost mountainous province of Ha Giang as a member of the Global Network of National Geoparks for the 2015-2018 period.

Representatives from UNESCO Vietnam handed over the recognition decision to the locality’ leaders at a conference in Dong Van district on November 12, which was to review the development process of the park over the last four years.

Dam Van Bong, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee said it is a great honour for the locality and Vietnam in general to be received the re-cognition, adding that this is the responsibility for the province to preserve and promote outstanding values of the heritage and introduce them to the world.

The park is one of the most attractive tourist sites in Ha Giang, contributing to luring more holiday-makers to the province and benefiting local people.

The local authorities have run communication campaigns in all the hamlets and communes in the locality in a bid to raise public awareness of conserving and promoting values of the heritage.

Dong Van plateau was recognised as a member of the Global Network of National Geoparks in 2010, becoming Vietnam’s first geological park and the second in Southeast Asia.

Covering a total area of 2,356 km2, it is 80 percent limestone and contains the fossils of thousands of species of prehistoric creatures from 400-600 million years ago.

It is also home to over 250,000 people from 17 different ethnic groups, who boast unique cultures that have been fostered over the centuries.

Recently, 14 archaeological sites were excavated in Dong Van, Meo Vac, and Yen Minh districts, in Dong Van plateau, revealing hundreds of relics believed to appear in the prehistoric and protohistoric times.

At the conference, participants underlined the need to build a specific strategy to protect and develop sustainably the park, saying that more scientific research should be carried out to discover more values of the heritage.

In recent year, Ha Giang province worked hard to implement the Global Geo-parks network’s criteria at the Dong Van Karst Plateau Geo-Park, while enhancing efforts to protect invaluable values of the heritage against impacts from the nature and human, and making use of the park’s advantages to promote local socio-economic development and tourism.-VNA