A festival in Phat Tich pagoda, Bac Ninh province (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Cities and provinces nationwide were bustling during the Lunar New Year, the most important festival of Vietnam, running from January 26 to February 2.

During the period, the flow of tourists to the capital city of Hanoi topped 230,600, up 7.5 percent year-on-year. Of which 62,670 were foreigners, up 15 percent.

Hanoi’s tourist attractions include the Temple of Literature, the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology, Ngoc Son and Quan Thanh temples, Tran Quoc pagoda, and former Hoa Lo prison.

In the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai from January 29 – February 10, cultural and sport events are also taking place as part of National Tourism Year 2017 Lao Cai - Northwest.

Visitors and locals joined folk games, singing competitions, festivals and enjoyed local cuisine.

Gau Tao festival of the Mong ethnic minorities in the east of Muong Khuong district from January 31- February 2 also attracted tourists.

Do Trong Nguyen, deputy head of the culture-information office of Lao Cai’s Sa Pa district, said nearly 40,000 people visited Sa Pa, including about 5,000 foreigners.

From January 31-February 1, spiritual tourist areas such as Bao Ha and Phuc Khanh temples in Bao Yen district, Tan Bao pagoda and Doi Co temple drew tens of thousands of holidaymakers.

In the northern province of Tuyen Quang on January 31, the annual boat racing contest on the Lo river lured tens of thousands of local residents and visitors.

Meanwhile, the northeastern province of Quang Ninh served more than 800,000 vacationers from January 26 – February 1, up about 45 percent from last year, earning in excess of 900 billion VND in revenue.

Tourist numbers to the UNESCO World Heritage Site Ha Long Bay surpassed 70,000. On the first day of the Lunar New Year, about 300 vessels carrying 5,000 passengers toured the bay, a 20 percent increase from normal days.

The number of visitors to local relic sites was estimated at 630,000, predominantly in Yen Tu and Ba Vang pagodas in Uong Bi city, Cua Ong temple, Long Tien and Cai Bau pagodas, Sun Wheel, and Dragon Park.

During the festival, more than 32,000 travelled through Mong Cai international border gate.

Similar activities also took place in the Mekong Delta, attracting tens of thousands of visitors.-VNA