During its nine festivity-filled days, the 2014 Hue Festival revived several unique ceremonies and cultural programmes imbued with Vietnamese cultural identities and achieved its objective of bringing the arts to the community, according to the Nhan Dan (People) online newspaper.

Focusing on the theme “Cultural Heritage with Integration and Development”, this year’s festival was the biggest yet, with the participation of 43 international delegations from five continents and 23 domestic art troupes, all of whom delighted audiences with nearly 100 arts programmes on 15 stages around Hue city.

In addition, the artists delivered free performances for locals in the districts and towns in Thua Thien – Hue province. Patients at Hue Central Hospital and Hue Medical and Pharmaceutical Hospital had a chance to enjoy music and dances by The Amigos from the US, La Colmenita from Cuba and Los Andes from Chile.

A street carnival which was held in the main streets of Hue to create an exciting atmosphere for the public received an enthusiastic response from visitors.

Mobile stages were set up on roadsides and at factories so that people from all walks of life could meet with famous singers, dancers and musicians from Vietnam and abroad.

“Hue Festival has brought joy to everyone and has created a bond among all participating nations. It also strengthened the solidarity and love among humans”, said Gonzalo Olmos, leader of the Chilean art troupe.

The festive atmosphere also spread to rural areas during the rural market held in Thuy Thanh commune, Huong Thuy town, where manual agricultural production practices were demonstrated by local residents. The event, which attracted around 9,000 visitors, encouraged the full participation of the public, making them major actors in organising activities as well as enjoying them.

According to Ngo Hoa, head of the festival’s organising board and vice chairman of the Thua Thien-Hue provincial People’s Committee, the festival was held under the motto of “Impression – Friendliness – Safety”, in which ensuring visitors safety was placed above all else. Relevant agencies made every effort to maintain security, social order and traffic safety. Therefore, the event created satisfaction among holidaymakers, as they were prevented from falling prey to tourist traps and were provided with attractive tourist products.

Over the first three days, Hue received nearly 50,000 visitors, roughly 22,000 of whom were foreigners. The number of visitors continued to increase sharply on the subsequent days, and the total reached 2.4 million by closing day - an increase of 25% over the previous edition in 2012. This figure includes 100,000 foreign visitors from 115 countries and territories.

The increase in tourist numbers and the improvement in the professionalism of event organisation are heartening signs for the festival’s organisers, according to Phan Tien Dung, director of the Thua Thien – Hue provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism. The festival’s success contributed to boosting tourism, attracting investment for develop tourist services, and helping to bring cultural value to tourist activities.-VNA