Diversifying the experiences available to visitors is the cornerstone of a major new plan to revitalise the tourism industry in the northern province of Quang Ninh in 2014.

The province boasts great potential for the industry thanks to its abundance of beauty sports including world famous Ha Long Bay, Yen Tu Buddhism complex, Bai Tu Long Bay and the Mong Cai international border gate. However, this potential is still mostly untapped.

Secretary of the provincial Party Committee Pham Minh Chinh has asked the local authority to continue raising the quality of human resources while rethinking the experiences currently on offer to tourists and finding ways of making them both more exciting and lucrative.

Last year, the province spent more than 900 million VND (42.3 million USD) on building a museum-library complex, which was inaugurated in October and awarded the prize “Building of the Year” by the Vietnam Urban Planning and Development Association.

Since it was inaugurated, the complex has welcomed nearly 30,000 visitors, many of them from foreign countries.

Meanwhile, since last August, Quang Ninh has held folk music performances everyday to entertain tourists in the province.

Recently, the province conducted a pilot programme in which it invited domestic and foreign travel agencies and journalists to join fact-finding tours, with the aim of encouraging them to spread the word to other countries worldwide.

Hotels are also getting in on the act, organising attractive new events to teach foreign visitors how to cook Vietnam’s traditional dishes and introducing them to the country’s famous tea and coffee.

The province served 7.5 million holidaymakers in 2013, a year-on-year rise of 7 percent, and earned 5 trillion VND (235 million USD) from tourism.-VNA