The Thua Thien-Hue Province Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism has teamed up with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to turn Thanh Toan Bridge, with its tiled roof, in Thuy Thanh commune, Huong Thuy township, into a destination for community based tourism.
As part of the ‘Developing community based tourism’ project, the bridge has been given a face lift and the local people have been trained in tourism services.
Thanh Toan Bridge , along with the tour ‘Countryside markets on festive days’ has attracted a large number of domestic and foreign tourists, especially during Hue Festival.
JICA will set up a management office and encourage the involvement of travel agencies in the programme.
In another effort to help Thua Thien-Hue develop community based tourism, JICA chose Phuoc Tich, a 500-year old village in Phong Hoa commune, Phong Dien district, to launch the ‘Upholding the community’s role in sustainable development through tourism’ project.
With many communal houses, pagodas, Champa relics sites and nearly 40 ancient houses, Phuoc Tich has attracted the attention of many visitors and travel agencies.
The agency has also organised a programme to help the ancient village restore pottery, with the participation of over 20 local residents, mostly artisans.
Another community based model of tourism can be seen in An Tay ward in Hue City , which helps to raise income and generate jobs for local people.
Ngo Hoa, the Permanent Vice Chairman of the Thua Thien-Hue People’s Committee, said community based tourism helps to promote Hue ’s culture and local products, especially handicrafts.
The model is expected to help the province reach its target of welcoming three million visitors by 2015, he said./.