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Nha Trang Cathedral eyes entry fees from foreigners to fund conservation

By Xuan Ngoc   September 22, 2019 | 10:56 pm PT
Nha Trang Cathedral eyes entry fees from foreigners to fund conservation
The Stone Church is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Nha Trang Town. Photo by Shutterstock/Ngoc Quang.
The Christ the King Cathedral in Nha Trang plans to collect entrance fees from foreign tourists to fund its maintenance.

Nguyen Huu Anh, head of the church, which is also known as the Stone Church, on Sunday wrote to provincial authorities seeking permission to charge VND10,000 ($0.43) for foreign tourists' entry.

"The money will be used for funding the church’s operation and preservation efforts," he said.

Over the years the number of visitors to the resort town of Nha Trang has been increasing. The church gets around 1,500 Vietnamese and foreign visitors a day, the latter being mostly Chinese and South Koreans.

Visitors need to register one day or at least one hour before the church opens at 8 a.m. Last year many groups of Chinese visitors failed to do so and were refused entry.

The largest church in Nha Trang is atop a hill overlooking the railroad station. It was built in French Gothic style by Priest Louis Vallet in the early 19th century, and remains one of the town’s most important remnants of French architecture.

It holds Mass every day between 5 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.

Nha Trang in the central province of Khanh Hoa is well known for its beaches and scuba diving, and attracts large numbers of backpackers and affluent travelers, as well as Vietnamese tourists. Nha Trang Bay is widely considered one of the world's most beautiful.

In the first half of this year, Nha Trang received more than one million Chinese tourists, up 39 percent from a year earlier. 

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