Cham towers with unique architecture have been an icon of Ninh Thuan province for centuries. (Photo: VNA)

Ninh Thuan (VNA) – The south central province of Ninh Thuan is expected to welcome 2.35 million visitors in 2019 and earn 1.15 trillion VND (49.95 million USD) from tourism.

In the year, the locality, which is home to 149 cultural heritages, plans to improve its tourism services and products.

Le Van Binh, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee and head of the province’s steering board for tourism development, said to meet the targets, Ninh Thuan has focused on enhancing State management in tourism, ensuring security and safety, protecting the environment, improving behaviour at tourist sites, improving human resources and raising public awareness of tourism development.

At the same time, the locality will promote itself both at home and abroad, he added.

According to the official, to create special tourism products, Ninh Thuan is calling for luxury tourism projects in the coastal areas of Binh Tien, Vinh Hy and Ninh Chu, and urban, maritime and eco-tourism in Phan Rang-Thap Cham city.

The province has, to date, attracted 50 tourism projects with total registered capital exceeding 17.54 trillion VND (754.22 million USD).

Accommodations in Ninh Thuan, which number 145 with 3,100 rooms, have paid attention to improving facilities and diversifying services, while seeking links with travel companies.

In 2018, Ninh Thuan served 2.19 million tourists, up 15.3 percent year-on-year, and raked in 1.05 trillion VND (45.15 million USD) from the sector, a year-on-year rise of 18.9 percent.
Among 149 cultural heritages in Ninh Thuan, there are two special national relic sites, and 12 national relic sites. Notably, the local Don Ca Tai Tu (southern folk music) was recognised as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humankind by UNESCO.

Cham pagodas with unique architecture have been an icon of Ninh Thuan province for centuries, with Po Klong Garai and Hoa Lai towers recognised as special national architectural relic sites.

In addition, the province is renowned for its festivals, such as the Whale Worshipping, leaving tomb and cremation ritual of the ethnic Cham Brahman people. 

The most important event for Cham people is the Kate festival, with activities taking place in temples, towers, and central areas in villages and towns. Falling in the seventh month of the Cham calendar, the festival reminds the ethnic Brahman community of their ancient gods and delivers wishes for bumper harvests and the growth of all beings. During the festival, people wear traditional clothes to join rituals and cultural activities, folk dances and musical performances with traditional instruments.

Besides organising traditional festivals, the province has developed tours of the craft villages of Bau Truc and My Nghiep.

Bau Truc pottery village, a national intangible heritage, is the oldest pottery village in Southeast Asia. Some 85 percent of the village’s 400 households make pottery. Every stage of the pottery-making process is done by hand. 

Meanwhile, My Nghiep is popular for its traditional craft of weaving brocade. Visitors can see locals weaving and making various products from brocade such as handbags, wallets and backpacks.-VNA