Vietnam-Japan cultural exchange days to take place
in Hoi An ancient city, the central province of Quang Nam, are expected to
attract more foreign tourists, particularly those from Japan, to destinations in
the central region.
During the event, the eighth of its kind in Hoi An, a series of programmes
imbued with the Vietnamese and Japanese cultures will be presented such as
performances of folk dancing, traditional music, dragon dance, traditional
costumes, tea drinking ceremony and calligraphy as well as a festival with
flower garlands and coloured lanterns on river.
Besides, the Iwamikagura royal singing and dancing troupe and the Daisuwataiko
drum group from Japan will join the event for the first time.
Starting from 2003, the annual event is to tighten friendship between Vietnam
and Japan and offers an opportunity to promote Hoi An, a world heritage site, to
international friends, said Vo Phung, Director of the Hoi An Culture and Sport
Established in the 16th century, Hoi An ancient city used to be an international
commerce hub on the East-West trade route. It was Vietnam’s most prosperous
trading port under the Nguyen dynasty as ships from Japan, China, Portugal,
Spain and the Netherlands docked in Hoi An for goods trading.
A number of existing archaeological sites and architectural projects proved that
Hoi An was a site for convergence and interface between the Cham, Vietnamese,
Chinese and Japanese cultures.
Moreover, Japan and central Vietnam in general and Hoi An in particular
treasured a time-honoured traditional relationship, prompting the Japanese to
visit the land where their ancestors used to travel to, Toshikazu Suzuki,
Director of the Japan human resource training and consultancy institute in
Vietnam, said at a workshop themed “Central Vietnam – A destination for Japanese
tourists, potential and solution” held in Quang Nam province last May.
However, poor services, which fail to meet Japanese visitors’ demand, are blamed
for the low number of Japanese tourists, who account for about only four percent
of the total one million foreign arrivals to the central region.
Also at the workshop, the three central localities of Quang Nam, Thua Thien-Hue
and Da Nang mapped out a plan, aiming at attracting 1 million Japanese tourists
to the region each year. The localities will accelerate tourism promotion in
Japan, open their tourism offices in Japan and organise Japanese language
courses for their small traders and tourist guides.