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HCM City mulls expanding river tour to Mekong Delta, Cambodia

In Uncategorized on July 30, 2010 at 7:20 pm




HCM City mulls expanding river tour to Mekong Delta, Cambodia


QĐND – Friday, July 30, 2010, 20:57 (GMT+7)

The government of HCMC has assigned its tourism department to survey a river tour linking the city with the Mekong Delta and the neighboring country of Cambodia. Tour operators, while applauding the plan, say the more urgent task should be to develop a wharf in the city for tourist boats first.


Under the city government’s instruction, the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism will draft an action plan this year to develop the river tour taking tourists from HCMC to the Mekong Delta province of An Giang and Cambodia.


The department is responsible for planning river routes for tourists, and discussing details as such with relevant departments and tour operators before submitting the plan to the city’s government.


The city’s tourism department said it would launch surveys next month to find suitable routes for tourists and consider services needed for the city’s river tourism.


Earlier, the department ascertained huge potential in river tourism after making surveys on two short routes, with one starting from Bach Dang Wharf to the confluence of Nha Be, and from the wharf to Tau Hu Canal.


Asked to comment on the expanded river tourism, most tour operators told the Daily they supported the scheme, but decried the lack of a wharf for tourist boats. They called for quick development of such a wharf.


There are around 20 tourist boats, floating restaurants, and canoes operating at the Bach Dang Wharf in the city’s District 1. At the wharf, such boats can drop anchor at the end of Nguyen Hue Boulevard and the end of Hai Ba Trung Street to receive guests but cannot be moored there for a long time because space is limited.


Furthermore, as Bach Dang Wharf is not a tourist wharf so it lacks services for guests as well as places for tourist buses to drop by.


Chiem Thanh Long, director of Binh Quoi Tourist Village, told the Daily that Binh Quoi had canceled its plan to build a big floating restaurant due to the lack of a venue to anchor.


“There is no place for new tourist boats. I think that the most important activity for the river tourism development plan is to build a tourist wharf in the city,” he said.


Binh Quoi currently has six boats and canoes operating on the river section between Binh Quoi and Bach Dang Wharf.


The tourism department estimated foreign arrivals in the city this month at around 188,000, up 20% year-on-year but down around 12,000 compared to June as now is the low season of the inbound sector. Tourism revenue is expected at VND2.7 trillion this month, up 15% year-on-year, bringing the total in the January-July period to over VND21.2 trillion.


Source: VietNamNet/SGT


Source: QDND

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