Ha Long welcomes 15 millionth visitor
Passing the 15 million visitor milestone marks a breakthrough in the tourism sector of Vietnam and Quang Ninh Province in particular.
The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and the Quang Ninh People’s Committee on December 19 organised a ceremony to welcome the 15 millionth visitor of Vietnam in 2018 at the Ha Long International Passenger Terminal in Ha Long City, Quang Ninh Province.
The 15 millionth visitor was Mr. James Kopenec from the US, who visited Ha Long with his wife, Mrs. Hermine Kopenec. The couple, and over 3,000 visitors and crew members on The Celebrity Millennium cruise from the US’ Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines arrived at the terminal at 11 AM on December 19.
The welcoming ceremony was organized at the multifunctional room of the Ha Long International Passenger Terminal, Vietnam’s first international passenger terminal.
“Since the 1 million visitor milestone in 1994, Vietnam has seen remarkable increases in the tourism sector. The 15 million visitor milestone is a particularly memorable milestone, showing that Vietnam is becoming an attractive destination for foreign visitors. It is also a premise to turn tourism into a key economic sector,” said Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Thien, Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
“Vietnam is really more beautiful than I thought, I am impressed with the nature and the friendly people. My wife said that Vietnamese people always welcome visitors and I cannot she is wrong,” said James Kopenec, the lucky visitor.
Paul, a visitor from Capetown, South Africa, said: “The Ha Long International Passenger Terminal is the most beautiful terminal I have ever visited.”
This year, Vietnam is stepping up tourism promotion activities. Vietnam is becoming more attractive in foreigners’ eyes due to its natural wonders, modern and synchronous infrastructure, and improved service quality, among others. With these advantages, Vietnam may very well welcome the 16 millionth visitor within the year.
2018 is also the National Tourism Year – Ha Long – Quang Ninh, and as of now Quang Ninh reports impressive achievements in luring tourists. According to the statistics published by the local Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, in 2018 the province welcomes an estimated number of 12.2 million visitors, up 24 percent year on year, 5.22 million of whom are foreigners coming from 150 countries and territories. Revenue from the tourism sector is expected to reach VND23.6 trillion ($1.02 billion), up 32 percent year on year.
The basis for the above estimates comes from the modern and synchronous transport system, which includes the Hai Phong-Ha Long Expressway, the Ha Long International Passenger Terminal, and the Van Don International Airport, which is expected to go into commercial operations this month.
In late November, a five-star cruiser with more than 3,000 passengers and crew members on board moored at the Ha Long International Passenger Terminal. Built under the PPP format between Vietnam’s largest estate developer Sun Group and Quang Ninh province, the Ha Long International Passenger Terminal is Vietnam’s first specialized terminal of its kind.
The work consists of a quay, a marina, a passenger terminal, and an administrative building, with the 524m quay being able to receive two cruise ships at the same time, each with the capacity of up to 225,000GRT and a total of 8,460 passengers and crew members.