|Miss Viet Nam H’Hen Niê made it into the top five in the Miss Universe 2018 competition.|
Vietnamese beauties were honoured in the world. For the first time, Miss Vietnam H’Hen Niê made it into the top five in the Miss Universe 2018 competition. The top five is the furthest Vietnam has ever achieved at the Miss Universe beauty pageant. Nguyen Phuong Khanh was crowned Miss Earth 2018. She was the first woman from Vietnam to win the prize since the pageant began in 2001.
Nguyen Huong Giang won at the Miss International Queen held in Thailand at one of the world’s top beauty pageants for transgender women. Vietnam’s representative, Vuong Ngoc Loan, beat 30 other contestants from around the world to take the crown in the final round of Mrs International 2018 held in Singapore.
2. Big day for James
|James Kopenec from the US receives a certificate showing he is the fifteen-millionth international tourist to Vietnam.|
Vietnamese tourism received the 15-millionth international visitor, James Kopenec from Arizona, in the US. He praised Vietnam as a wonderful country, saying it exceeded his expectations. Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Ngoc Thien said receiving 15 million international tourists was a milestone for the nation’s tourism industry.
This year, Vietnam also won big at the World Travel Awards. The country was named Asia’s Leading Destination. InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort became Asia’s Leading Green Resort, Asia’s Leading Luxury Resort, and Asia’s Leading Luxury Wedding Resort. Vietnam Airlines, the national flag carrier was named as Asia’s Leading Airline – Premium Economy Class 2018.
3. Mapping out the past
|A page of Hoang Hoa Su Trinh Do. – Photo thethaovanhoa.vn|
Hoang Hoa Su Trinh Do (The Envoyship Journeys to China – literally translated as maps and itinerary of the envoy’s journey to China) were officially recognised as a heritage Memory of the World at the 2018 General Meeting of UNESCO’s Memory of the World Committee for Asia and the Pacific (MOWCAP). The historical maps dating back to the 18th century recorded the diplomatic relationship between Vietnam and China.
4. UNESCO recognition
|UNESCO recognised Non Nước Cao Bằng Geopark in the northern border province of Cao Bang as a global geopark.|
UNESCO recognised Non Nuoc Cao Bang Geopark in the northern border province of Cao Bang as a global geopark. The 3,000sq.km-wide geopark is about 300km from Hanoi. It is home to fossils, ocean sediment, volcanic rocks, minerals and karst landscapes, which can give researchers insight into the 500 million years of the earth’s history. The site includes famous destinations such as Thang Hen Lake, Phia Oắc ecological site and Nguom Ngao Cave, with rich biodiversity.
Various cultural festivals were held to preserve and promote unique cultural heritage including a ceremony held in Binh Dinh Province for the formal reception of UNESCO recognition of bài chòi art (half-game half-theatre performance) as an item of world intangible cultural heritage. Huế Festival 2018 presented stage shows and cultural activities performed by artists from 20 countries and territories including Việt Nam. The Highlands Gong Culture Festival presented performances from more than 1,000 artists. Gongs symbolising wealth and power to local people, were played during most rituals and ceremonies. The gong culture in Tay Nguyen was recognised as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritages of Humanity by UNESCO in 2005.
5. Big screen record
|Australian actor/producer David Wenham and Ha Thuc Van, director of Red Bridge Film Services Company are seen at the opening ceremony of HANIF.|
Hanoi International Film Festival (HANIFF) 2018 broke a record with 500 international and Vietnamese films screened for free. Iranian film The Dark Room, directed by Rouhollah Hejazi, won the Best Feature-length Film Award at the festival. HANIFF also received famous actors, actresses and filmmakers all over the world. With the theme “Cinema – Integration and Sustainable Development”, the festival aims to honour outstanding cinematographic works with high artistic and humanistic values and creativity while encouraging new movie talents.
6. Fine foods
|The first Asian Food and Culture Festival was held on April 20-22 in Hà Nội and April 27-29 in Quang Ninh Province. – File Photo|
Vietnam hosted the Asian food and culture festival for the first time named Mon Asian Food Festival (MAFF 2018) to feature the quintessence and diversity of cuisine and cultural characteristics of Asian countries.
The festival took place from April 20- 22, 2018 at Mon City My Dinh (Hanoi) and April 27-29, 2018 at October 30 Square, Ha Long City (Quang Ninh Province).
The event gathered the attendances of ambassadors of gastronomy, tourism, art troupes from Việt Nam and other Asian countries including Japan, the Republic of Korea, Myanmar as well as many Vietnamese and international artists and culinary experts.
The event attracted 500,000 visitors in Hạ Long City and 30,000 visitors per day in Hanoi.
7. Opera anniversary
|This year marks 100th anniversary of southern reformed opera art, which is the convergence of southern Vietnamese folk songs, classical music, tuong (traditional opera) and modern spoken drama.|
This year marks the 100th anniversary of southern reformed opera art, which is the collection of southern Vietnamese folk songs, classical music, tuồng (traditional opera) and modern spoken drama.
A month-long programme was launched earlier this month to celebrate the anniversary with various activities like an exhibition showcasing costumes, accessories, props like swords, bows and spears, and portraits of talented Vietnamese cai luong artists on December 17-19 at Tran Huu Trang Cai Luong Theatre on Tran Hung Dao Street in District 1.
All the exhibits will be displayed on Nguyen Hue Pedestrian Street in District 1 from January 10-14.
A four-hour gala will be held at Nguyen Hue Pedestrian Street on January 13 to honour cai luong artists, backstage workers and journalists, who have contributed to the art’s development.
The event will feature 400 veteran and young performers and musicians and 100 dancers, who will tell stories about the art’s establishment and development.
On the follwoing day, there will be a performance at Nguyen Hue, presenting famous cai luong excerpts from Thai Hau Duong Van Nga (Queen Mother Dương Van Nga), Chien Binh (The Soldier), and Rang Ngoc Con Son (Pearl in Con Son).
The HCM City municipal People’s Committee will organise a meeting between the city’s leaders with cải lương artists and theatre artists at the People’s Committee’s headquarter on January 19.
8. Tourism first
The first ever Vietnam Travel and Tourism Summit was held in Hanoi on December 5-6, under the framework of Vietnam Economic Forum (VEF) gathering hundreds of international experts in the field and concerning tourism enterprises.
The summit’s first session on December 5 under the theme of “The need for restructuring the sector” heard suggestions on enhancing the infrastructure of Vietnamese tourism and measures to attract investment and training.
‘Sustainable development of Vietnamese tourism until 2030’ was the theme of the high-level session on December 6 which heard from a research report from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) as well as memoirs on improving competitiveness for tourism, destination management and aviation infrastructure by prominent figures from Air Asia, the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), and others.
A signing ceremony was held regarding investment from international businesses to Vietnam and from domestic enterprises to localities with the total commercial value up to US$2 billion.
9. Festivals suspended
|Hanoi’s authorities have announced that all music festivals would be suspended after the sudden deaths of seven people of suspected drug overdose at a local music festival on September 16. — Photo vov.vn|
Hanoi’s authorities have announced that all music festivals would be suspended after the sudden deaths of seven people of suspected drug overdoses at a local music festival on September 16.
The incident took place at the Vietnam Electronic Weekend (VEW) Festival at the West Lake Water Park in Tay Ho District.
All the people, between 18 and 29 years old, tested positive for narcotics.
The incident was believed to be the worst narcotics-related case in Vietnam, prompting authorities in Hanoi to stop licensing these events until results of the investigation are announced.
Quest Festival 2018, a popular music and arts festival planned for weekend November 24-25 at the Vietnam National Villages for Ethnic Culture and Tourism was cancelled at the last minute as a result.
10. Vietnamese tourists disappear
A total of 152 Vietnamese out of 153 who arrived with tour groups in Kaohsiung earlier in December have gone missing.
The four groups flew into the southern Taiwanese city on December 21 and 23, but on December 25, the Taiwanese travel agency handling them told the Tourism Bureau it was unable to locate 152 of the 153 travelers, according to the Central News Agency.
The bureau then told the Ministry of Foreign Affairs it had decided to stop granting group visas for tourists from Vietnam, one of the countries Taiwan has targeted with its New Southbound Policy aimed to foster closer ties and attract more tourists.
Under a special programme launched in 2015, visa procedures would be simplified if at least five people travelled together and the visitors did not need to supply evidence of their financial situation, CNA reported.
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