Regional linkage key to sending Kon Tum’s tourism skyward

A potential solution to raise the profile and Kon Tum’s tourism industry could lie in linking with other Central Highlands provinces. Combining forces geographically could create exposure to a wider array of tourism products to assist Kon Tum’s tourism industry to take off.
Regional linkage key to sending Kon Tum’s tourism skyward ảnh 1Paragliding demonstration show named “Flying over the jungle -Sa Thay 2022” is expected to create a unique tourism product for Kon Tum. (Photo: Vietnamplus)

According to the statistics of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Kon Tum province, in the first 4 months of the year, Kon Tum has attracted nearly 500,000 visitors. Numbers have reached 53% of the plan representing an increase of 3.8 times compared to the same period in 2021. Total revenues came in at over 110 billion VND, up 81.5% over the same period last year.

Tourism development is not commensurate with potential

Nguyen Van Binh, Director of the provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism said that Kon Tum's natural conditions, especially diverse terrain, have created a fairly rich natural tourism resource for the locality. Prominent among them are Mang Den pine forest (Kon Plong district), Chu Mom Ray national park (Sa Thay district), and the Ngoc Linh nature reserve (Dak Glei district).

Kon Tum has an excellent system of tangible and intangible cultural heritages, imbued with the cultural identities of local ethnic minorities. The "Gong Cultural Space of the Central Highlands" is a “Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity”. It is a highlight in Kon Tum tourism and has been recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

According to statistics of the General Department of Tourism under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the number of international visitors to Kon Tum in the period 2015-2019 (the period before the COVID-19 pandemic) reached over 181,000 arrivals. This ranks 2nd in the Central Highlands region, just behind Lam Dong (over 2 million visitors). However, the number of domestic visitors to Kon Tum during this period was the lowest in the region at just over 1.1 million visitors. This has limited the province's total tourism revenue to only 1,100 billion VND, ranking 4/5 in the region, just above Dak Nong.

Ha Van Sieu, Deputy Director of the General Department of Tourism, said as the infrastructure is still being developed while resources are still limited. Kon Tum’s tourism has not yet developed commensurately with its potential and strength.

Taking full advantage of tourism

In fact, tourism products in Kon Tum have not yet created new revenues to match the characteristics and advantages of the province. Kon Tum still employs the same tourism brand as other the Central Highlands provinces, and has not separated itself out on its own unique identity.

Regional linkage key to sending Kon Tum’s tourism skyward ảnh 2Caravan Famtrip “Come to Ngoc Linh Ginseng National Treasure K5” - brings visitors to Ngoc Linh ginseng garden built to create a unique tourism product for Kon Tum. (Photo: VNA)

Deputy General Director of the General Department of Tourism Ha Van Sieu recommended that the specific tourism products in Kon Tum province need to be developed. Good examples are the experience of Ngoc Linh ginseng culture, Mang Den eco-resort, experiencing the community culture of the Kon K'Tu, and the Kon Bring ethnic groups.

With a community of 43 ethnic groups living together, such as Xo Dang, Bahnar, Gie Trieng, Jrai, Hre, Ro Mam and Brau, Kon Tum, there is a diverse treasure of traditional ethnic culture and art. Therefore, the development of tourism associated with the interests of the ethnic minority community is considered an important factor for the success of the tourism industry of Kon Tum.

Opening development direction to the future

According to the assessment of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Kon Tum, in recent years, the province's tourism promotion and advertising efforts have been innovative, but still lack professionalism. Tourism cooperation and development have not yet made a huge breakthrough.

Regional linkage key to sending Kon Tum’s tourism skyward ảnh 3Rong house in Kon Ko Tu community tourism village, Kon Tum city. (Photo: Vietnamplus)

Therefore, attracting big investors and creating regional links to other areas of tourism are seen as pathways for advancement. A recently-announced tourism development plan in the Cambodia-Laos-Vietnam development triangle until 2025 with a vision to 2030, will be a “key” factor that can open the future for Kon Tum tourism industry.

In 2021, the People's Committee of Kon Tum issued a list of projects attracting investment into the province in the period of 2021-2025, in which 47 projects involve the tourism service.

According to Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Van Hung, in implementing the "red carpet" policy, Kon Tum province must select potential investors who can retain the core values of indigenous culture to ensure sustainable development is possible./.


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