Flowery Da Lat hooks up with China on direct flights

By VnExpress   December 18, 2016 | 10:42 pm PT
Flowery Da Lat hooks up with China on direct flights
A vegetables farm in Da Lat. Photo from VnExpress Photo Contest/Pham Phuoc
The Central Highlands is looking to cash in on Chinese tourists.

Low-cost carrier Vietjet Air has launched direct flights between the flowery Central Highlands' town of Da Lat and China's Wuhan Province.

The first nonstop flight, carrying more than 200 passengers from Wuhan, landed at Lien Khuong Airport on Sunday, said Nguyen Thi Nguyen, head of the local tourism department.

The number of Chinese tourists is just too big to ignore, so rather than wait for a national effort, Lam Dong Province has decided to open a direct route to China to boost the local tourism sector.

“We expect a surge in foreign tourists to Lam Dong now that the direct air route is open,” Nguyen said.

Visitor numbers from China to the province are expected to increase by 10-12 percent to 250,000 this year.

Official statistics show that Chinese tourists to Vietnam from January-November soared 53.9 percent from a year ago to 2.48 million, accounting for more than a quarter of the total international arrivals to the country.

Foreign tourists to Vietnam hit a record high of nine million in the first 11 months this year, up 25.4 percent from a year ago.

Da Lat, situated 1,500 meters above sea level in the Central Highlands, was ranked fourth on the top 10 list of rising destinations in Asia by popular travel booking site TripAdvisor.

In January, the New York Times also recommended Da Lat among the 52 places to go in 2016, describing it as “an agricultural El Dorado” with unique scenes of pine forests, locally grown avocados and artichoke tea.

Related news:

Rising stars: Vietnam’s Da Lat, Sa Pa named among best new destinations for 2017

The romantic pink hill of Da Lat

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