Developing cultural – spiritual tourism in Quang Tri

Friday - 22/12/2017 09:54
Quang Tri is a province in Vietnam’s Central Coast, the North borders Quang Binh province, the South borders Thua Thien Hue province, the West borders Laos and the East borders the East sea.
Truong Son national martyrs’ cemetery (Photo by: Ho Cau)
Truong Son national martyrs’ cemetery (Photo by: Ho Cau)
Be located on the starting of the East – West Economic Corridor route, Quang Tri is the connecting point among East – West tourism product, the central Heritage Road and the Legendary Road with specific tourism product “Eating rice from three countries within 1 day”. To be evaluated as “the lively battlefields Museum” of Vietnam, Quang Tri has many advantages and convenient conditions to develop cultural – spiritual tourism.
With a huge system of historical and revolutionary relics which associated with the great resistance war for national salvation of the country, Quang  Tri is famous for places which have made well-known marks in the two wars against France and the United States for national liberation. Among which are 4 relics which are ranked as special national relics: Hien Luong – Ben Hai river banks, Quang Tri Ancient Citadel, Vinh Moc tunnel, Truong Son road – Ho Chi Minh Trail. Besides, Quang Tri is also famous for relics which associated with the revolutionary history of the nation such as: Ta Con Air-based, Lao Bao prison, the General Secretary Le Duan commemoration house… It can be said that Quang Tri is not only the first but also the only province which exploit the type of cultural - spiritual tourism.
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Quang Tri Ancient Citadel (Photo by: Nguyen Hai Quang)
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The General Secretary Le Duan commemoration house (Photo by: Trang Nhi)
With the position as the boundary of the country during the War against US, Quang Tri was directly destroyed by the war. This devastation made the people of this place become more resilient and unyielding, which have left many heroic evidences. This is also the land fulled of bloods and bones of many soldiers, our people in the struggle for national liberation. Therefore, it is not strange that Quang Tri has many famous revolutionary relics. Thanks to this advantage, Quang Tri annually attracts millions of domestic and foreign visitors.
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Vinh Moc tunnel (Photo by: Trinh Hoang Tan)
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 Tourits have came to Vinh Moc tunnel more and more  (Photo by: Trang Nhi)
With a convenient location for tourism development, Quang Tri is located at the intersection of the country's most important development corridor and the Greater Mekong sub-region, that is the north-south corridor axis along National Highway 1A and the East-West Corridor. Besides, Quang Tri is located between two world cultural heritages: Quang Binh and Quang Nam, and borders Hue City, where has a long history of tourism development, attracting many domestic and foreign tourists. In addition, Quang Tri also borders Laos via Lao Bao International Border Gate. With this advantage, the tours will be formed to connect Quang Binh - Quang Tri - Hue - Da Nang - Hoi An. At the same time, via the Lao Bao border gate, tourism routes linking the two countries are also formed and developed.
Quang Tri has convenient transportation system, with provincial and interprovincial road routes which linked to 2 national highway 1 and 9, Ho Chi Minh trail. In addition to the road, seaway transportation of the province can be conducted on Cua Viet and Cua Tung ports. The major historical and revolutionary tourism development points have been developed along the road route 9, Ho Chi Minh trail, the area of Hien Luong bridge-Ben Hai river, Vinh Moc and Quang Tri town. These roads are being invested for building and linking to each other, which is a convenient base for linking cultural – spiritual tourism sites in the province.
Talking about cultural – spiritual tourism, can not ignore the system of martyrs cemeteries here. According to statistics, Quang Tri has 72 martyrs cemeteries, among which are two national cemeteries which gather tens of thousands of martyrs' remains: Truong Son Martyrs National Cemetery and National Martyrs' Cemetery Road 9 with the spiritual meaning for the purpose of gratitude for those who sacrificed for the national liberation. In which, the Truong Son Cemetery with an area of 39.6 hectares, 10,243 graves, is the place for remains of martyrs who sacrificed along Truong Son road.
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Truong Son road (Photo by: Nguyen Hai Quang)
Quang Tri has shaped the unique tourism products of the province and improved the quality of services to increase competitiveness. Recognizing the strengths in tourism development in the province, in recent years, Quang Tri is promoting the nostalgic tourism program – which can be considered as precursors for the development of cultural – spiritual tourism in the next stage. The nostalgic tour, tour to visit back to the ancient battlefield have gained much success at first stage. However, if develop only this type of tourism, it is not commensurate with the natural potential of the province. Therefore, the development of cultural – spiritual tourism is a good orientation to exploit fully the potential, advantages of Quang Tri tourism. It needs to orient the specific tourism products so that the tourism of province can have the investment in infrastructure development in accordance with the direction to promote the development of cultural – spiritual tourism in the future with high sustainability.
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Workshop on linking to develop old battlefield
and teammates commemoration toursim in Quang Tri in 2017 (Photo by: Ngo Van Minh)
Another important factor is that Quang Tri is a land which contains many relics of religious beliefs and revolutionary history, which has special value not only to the national people but also to the hearts of friends on the world. Due to geographical and historical features, Quang Tri is one of the provinces in the Central region which has favorable conditions in relations with other regions in the country and other countries in the world. Quang Tri is also a place which is very easy to penetrate, develop the cultures, ideas and religions such as Buddhism (Sac Tu Tinh Quang Pagoda, Dien Tho Pagoda, Trung Don Pagoda), Catholic (Mother La Vang Pilgrimage Center).
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Sac Tu Tinh Quang Pagoda (Internet)
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Mother La Vang Pilgrimage Center (Internet)
Besides, Quang Tri has an unique system of cultures, festivals with spiritual features. It is a land of history and culture with many festivals, including folk festivals that have been formed for long time, called traditional festivals, new festivals are shaped such as revolutionary festivals, festivals related to the religions ... These festivals are purely the basis, potential and also the advantage for the development of cultural – spiritual tourism of the province, among which are two types of historical revolutionary festival and festivals belong to the religions. Historical revolutionary festivals such as: The National Re-unification festival, Ancient Citadel night festival, Light Flower festival on Thach Han river, festivals to commemorate heroes and martyrs, religious festivals such as the Christian Festival (La Vang Pilgrimage Festival, Christmas), Buddhist Festival (Buddha Festival, Vu Lan Festival).
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The National Re-unification festival (Photo by: Nguyen Hải Quang)
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The light flower night to commemorate heros and martyrs on Thach Han river 
(Photo by: Trinh Hoang Tan)
Morever, Quang Tri tourism products are diversified. This is an important advantage for the development of cultural – spiritual tourism of the province. Tourists come here can visit not only historical – cultural – revolutionary relics but also natural landscapes of Quang Tri land and people, with long and romantic sands in Cua Tung, Cua Viet, primary nature in Con Co island, experiencing ecotourism in Ru Linh forest, Tra Loc, Chenh Venh waterfall, Ta Puong waterfall…
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Con Co island (Photo by: Nguyen Hai Quang)
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Chenh Venh waterfall (Photo by: Trang Nhi)
With all these potentials and advantages, Quang Tri has enough capacity to develop tourism, especially cultural – spiritual tourism. Hopefully, in the near future, cultural – spiritual tourism will be more and more develop, contributing to develop Quang Tri tourism become the major economic sector according to the Resolution No. 08-NQ/TW dated 16th, January, 2017 of The Ministry of Finance and The Action Program No. 83-CTHĐ/TU dated 25th, July, 2017 of Quang Tri Provincial Standing Committee.
                
        Posted at the Viet Nam Toursim Golden Page in 2017
                            Translator: Trang Nhi

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