To discover authentic Vietnam inline with the sustainable tourism practices, the ideas of “living” and “doing” must be placed at the heart of the travel experience. This state of mind is opposed to mass tourism which makes you a mere carefree spectator.
North Vietnam is a region of the country not to be missed. Not only because of Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, but it is also where you will find breathtaking bays, superb rice terraces, and unrivaled landscapes. The cultural attractions of northern Vietnam are as diverse as the local populations, from the highlands to the mountain tribes of the far north. Here are some ideas to guide you to the main destinations of the region while ensuring conformity with the sustainable tourism pillars: social, economic, and environmental. The social and economic dimensions are especially key for the development of sustainable tourism offer in Vietnam to avoid the to avoid “folklorization ” of the local population and to ensure that the benefits of the tourism activity get to the local development and to the local population.
Halong Bay is, without a doubt, one of the most popular destinations in northern Vietnam. However, the less-known and smaller, Tu Long Bay deserves the detour. Close to Halong, it also has a limestone plateau, beautiful blue waters, and an abundance of small islands. Much less crowded than its neighbor, you can take places on boats that take you to the Bay’s main sights during the day or over several days.
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Tam Coc can be described as rice paddies surrounded by limestone cliffs and rock formations.In fact, Tam Coc is one of the most spectacular destinations in the region.The best way to explore is by boat, and you can set off on a boat that will take you along the green rice paddies and between the striking limestone cliffs.You will even float through three tunnels that cross the mountains, which have been dug over time by the river itself.
One of the most remote provinces in the country is Ha Giang.Close to the border with China, Ha Giang province is known for its green forests and granite mountains. It is an incredible destination for exploring ethnic diversity and participating in outdoor activities such as camping or hiking. As a picturesque province, Ha Giang is home to hundreds of spectacular views. Outdoor markets are common in Ha Giang, with residents traveling to attend these weekly or monthly events. One of the most exciting is the Dong Van market, which takes place on Sunday.
A few kilometres from the Chinese border is the town of Bac Ha. There are a handful of local restaurants serving delicious and inexpensive food, and several vendors sell handicrafts.What is really worth the trip to Bac Ha, however, is the Sunday market. Every Sunday morning, people from all over the region gather at Bac Ha, and this becomes a cacophony of colors, sounds and dynamism. Members of the surrounding mountain tribes make purchases and sales, making it a great opportunity to see a range of ethnic clothing and cultural diversity in one place.
As the capital of the country, Hanoi is an exhilarating mixture of Eastern and Western cultures. French colonialism is visible through the cuisine and architecture, especially in the French Quarter of the district of Hoàn Kiếm. Hanoi is full of incredible temples and a visit to the 11th-century temple of literature is a must-do. The side-by-side museum and mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh side by side are also major attractions in Hanoi, and both are striking buildings from the outside.
The development of sustainable tourism in a rich, diverse, and already popular destination like Vietnam is challenging. The country has an already established strong tourism sector where there are existing international partnerships with major groups that keep the local population at a distance from benefiting from the tourism income.
Sustainable tourism is an increasingly important issue in Vietnam, and the country has taken steps to promote and develop sustainable practices in the tourism industry. Vietnam’s government and tourism industry are working together to promote sustainable tourism practices such as reducing the environmental impact of tourism, supporting local communities, and preserving cultural heritage. The country is also working on initiatives to reduce plastic waste and promote environmental conservation, such as the “Green Tourism” program, which encourages hotels, restaurants, and tour operators to adopt environmentally friendly practices. Additionally, the government has also implemented policies to support sustainable tourism development, such as the “Vietnam National Strategy on Sustainable Tourism Development” which focuses on reducing the negative impact of tourism on the environment and promoting the conservation of biodiversity.