|The Leshan Giant Buddha, a World Heritage Site, that attracts many tourists to Sichuan (Photo courtesy of the Sichuan Department of Culture and Tourism)
He stressed the desire to co-operate with Vietnam to boost the tourism industries of the two countries during a conference hosted by the Chinese Embassy in Hanoi and the Vietnam Administration of Tourism (VNAT).
“There are direct flights from Hanoi and HCM City to Sichuan,” he said. “In the near future, with direct flights connecting Da Nang and Nha Trang to Sichuan, we believe that we can have more tourists from Vietnam and vice versa.”
Dou said Vietnam has many beautiful destinations that attract Sichuan people, for example Ha Long Bay in Quang Ninh Province and Trang An Complex in Ninh Binh Province.
“I had a chance to visit Hanoi and the Old Quarter, I realise that there are many similarities between people in Hanoi and Sichuan,” he said.
“With effort to lure more Vietnamese tourists to Sichuan, we have special offers for travel agents and businesses from Vietnam, we will also organise some familiarisation trips for travel companies and press from Vietnam to visit Sichuan.”
For his part, Ha Van Sieu, vice chairman of the VNAT, said he also had a business trip to Sichuan and acknowledged that there are many big attractions to tourists in general and Vietnamese people in particular.
“I feel impressed with destinations of Sichuan, especially the World Heritage Sites such as Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, Jiuzhaigou Valley and Leshan Giant Buddha,” he said.
“It takes only two hours to fly between Sichuan and Vietnam. With close distance and culture, we have many good conditions to boost tourism of the two sides.”
Early this month, the VNAT hosted a conference to introduce Vietnamese tourism in Sichuan. The VNAT and the Sichuan Department of Culture and Tourism signed an agreement to co-operate to promote tourism on May 17.
In 2018, Sichuan received 700 million tourists totally, according to Bai Shi Tuan from Chinese Embassy to Vietnam.