Foreign arrivals to Hanoi surge 10.8 percent hinh anh 1Tran Quoc Pagoda on the West Lake, a tourist attraction in Hanoi  (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Hanoi has welcomed more than 5.3 million foreign arrivals so far this year, up 10.8 percent from the same period in 2018.

According to the municipal Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the number of foreigners staying overnight surged by 8 percent to over 3.73 million. Meanwhile, the capital city also served nearly 18.5 million domestic tourists, rising 9.3 percent year on year.

Revenue from tourists during the January-October period is estimated at 83.16 trillion VND (3.58 billion USD), up 31.3 percent.

This year, Hanoi was again listed in various tourism rankings. Japan’s All Nippon Airways ranked the city 25th among the 26 best Asian cities for a combination of business and leisure. The city ranked fourth among the 25 destinations in Asia and 15th among the 25 destinations in the World in 2019 Index compiled by TripAdvisor.

Most recently, it was named in the Cable News Network (CNN)'s list of the 17 best places in Asia.

The city is striving to welcome 29 million tourists and record 103 trillion VND (4.43 billion USD) in tourism revenue for the year.

It is working to establish itself as a true tourism hub, and looking to improve the quality of destinations and developing infrastructure and tourism products.

The capital plans to attract investment to build shopping centres and accelerate major projects like the Kim Quy cultural, tourism and entertainment park in Dong Anh district, a horse racing and entertainment complex in Soc Son district, and the Hanoi Museum. It will also boost preservation projects at the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long, Bat Trang pottery village and Van Phuc silk village.

Efforts are also being made to develop 20 – 30 high-quality tourist sites across the city. Additionally, the values of local cultural heritages and traditional villages will be utilised to turn them into magnets for tourists.

Hanoi will also augment preparations for upcoming big sports events such as Formula One racing and the 31st Southeast Asian Games to attract visitors.

Additionally, it will also make use of local culinary culture and promote MICE tourism as well as tourism products based on the strengths of its localities.

The Vietnamese capital is also working to develop high-end accommodation facilities.

Director of the department Tran Duc Hai said the municipal People’s Committee has approved in principle 75 high-end accommodation projects with nearly 20,000 rooms. As of June this year, there were 3,499 accommodation establishments with 60,812 rooms in the city, including 67 hotels rated three to five stars with 10,004 rooms and seven condotel complexes rated four to five stars with 1,349 rooms.

Cooperation in tourism development is also a key task of the sector, he said, noting that his department is carrying out a promotion cooperation programme for 2019-2024 with TV channel CNN International.

It will also take part in meetings of the Council for Promotion of Tourism in Asia and cooperation activities of the Tourism Promotion Organisation for Asian-Pacific Cities.

Coordination with airlines, domestic and foreign media, embassies, international organisations and travel companies will also be strengthened to hold trips for businesses and reporters from key markets, according to the department.

Hanoi aims to welcome 30 million tourist arrivals, including 5.7 million foreigners, in 2020, and attain an annual growth of 8 – 10 percent in the sector. Its revenue from tourists is expected to reach 120 trillion VND in 2020 and grow by 15 – 17 percent year on year./.