Halong Bay, Vietnam

Halong bay, Vietnam

Ha Long Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a popular travel destination, located in Quang Ninh province, Vietnam. Administratively, the bay belongs to Hạ Long City, Cẩm Phả town, and part of Van Don district

Mt.Phousi, Luang Prabang, Laos

The Phousi Mountain (Luang Prabang)

The Phousi Mountain is situated in the centre of Luang Prabangs. To climb up the mountain can be hard but it is definitely worth the trip. There is a formidable view from the top of the mountain where you can see "The Royal Palace", and the surrounding rivers and villages.

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Angkor Wat is the largest Hindu temple complex and the largest religious monument in the world.

Shwedagon Pagoda, Burma

Shwedagon Pagoda, Burma

The Shwedagon Pagoda officially titled Shwedagon Zedi Daw, also known in English as the Great Dagon Pagoda and the Golden Pagoda, is a 99 metres gilded pagoda and stupa located in Yangon, Burma.

Thien Mu pagoda

Thien Mu pagoda, Vietnam

Thien Mu Pagoda is a historic temple in the city of Huế in Vietnam. Its pagoda has seven storeys and is the tallest in Vietnam.

Jul 31, 2015

The collaboration between Vietjet and Boeing Company

A Memorandum of Collaboration between Vietjet and the Boeing Company has been signed this month. This means there are to be further support from Boeing in branding, marketing and training.

Vietjet are about to purchase more Boeing aircrafts and there will be further discussions about financing, commercial terms, flight and maintenance training, marketing, branding and fleet planning.

This Moc requires the cooperative efforts between both sides in order to achieve the target of enhancing the fleet of Vietjet air with the aircraft from Boeing Company.

Mr. Nguyen Thanh Hung, the vice chairman of Vietjet’s Board of Management , stated that their investment in the modern fleet was needed and essential to the development of the Airline in the Asia-Pacific.

There is also a belief that thanks to this collaboration, more business opportunities will be brought to the Boeing Company and Vietjet.

An incredible growth has been recorded since the plan was launched in 2011. Vietjet’s previous plan of purchasing 107 aircrafts seems to be useless with this rapid increasing demand.

There are now an A320 aircraft and 25 A321 ones in Vietjet’s fleet and this fleet is about to be expanded in the end of 2015 with 4 more aircrafts.

This Airline also ordered 6 more A321 aircrafts in the Paris Air Show 2015.

In the early of this month, Vietjet has also signed  a MoU with JP Morgan Chase so that the US bank would help the Airline with the aircraft purchasing and leasing.

Jul 30, 2015

Parliament welcomes public

The Parliament in Nay Pyi Taw has welcomed around 200 tourists in the last 3 months.

The Director of Hotels and Tourism claimed that the majority of visitors coming to the Parliament are from Europe and he believed that this would help tourism in the city develop better in the years around.

There are more than 8,000 international standard hotel rooms but only 20 to 30 % of them were used.

Visitors are allowed to visit the Parliament from last April but they have to comply with really strict rules. Visitors have to contact the travel agents which will apply for permission from the Directorate of Hotels and Tourism for each visit afterwards.

The application process need to be completed and submitted five days before the visit.

The official said that there was no entrance fee then but they were about to collect fees in the future.

The Parliament being open to public was a part of the marketing plan in order to enhance tourism in the city. There were 60 hotels built in the last 3 years and an international airport opened in 2014 .

Around 100,000 visitors have been welcomed to Nay Pyi Taw last year.

The temple and white elephants are the main tourist attractions here, but opening the Parliament proves that they are going on the right road. Not until April were there tour buses stopped at the gate of the Parliament.

The fact that the ASEAN Tourism Forum being held in the city last January really made the authority more fascinated in boosting tourism in this country. There were numerous suggestions were presented at the side – line meeting on the way to enhance Nay Pyi Taw’s attractions and opening the Parliament to public was one of those.

The effort of boosting tourism can also be seen in transportation when a new route connecting Mandalay and Nay Pyi Taw was opened last April.

Jul 29, 2015

Remember to wear swimsuit on Danang’s beaches!

“Beachgoers visiting Danang must wear swimsuits” This has become the hottest topic at a meeting held in Danang, a beautiful coastal city in Vietnam.

Many complaints about the local visitors dressing unsuitably when bathing in the beach have been raised at the 14th session of the People’s Council of the city.

Mr. Ngo Quang Vinh, the head of Danang Department of Culture, Sports, and Tourism said that the clarity of beach was highly praised by tourists but there was the problem in the dress code of the locals when swimming. They tend to wear more clothes and even sleep clothes in order to avoid the sun. This is completely strange to the foreigners who are the sun lovers.

 A controversial discussion has been triggered off between those who thought that there should a law compelling visitors to wear swimsuit and those who believed that the idea would violate Vietnamese culture.

There was also an opinion that sleep clothes for sea bathing was a huge progress since Vietnamese used to swim with full clothes in the past.

Zoned beaches for bikini lovers are recommended by Danang’s tourism Department.

The head of Tourism Department said that there would be a separate area for visitors wearing bikini or a bikini show on the beach to acquaint Vietnamese with this two – piece swimsuits.

Nothing about male dress code on beach was mentioned and the discussion on bikini was assumed to concentrate mainly on what female beachgoers dress.

Those who are against the idea assert that people should be allowed to wear what they feel comfortable in without zoning. They also believe that concentrating on the matter is better than compelling.

Jul 28, 2015

The urge of visa exemption

Cambodia’s tourism industry believes that offering visa exemption is the easiest way to be more competitive and attract more tourists.

The subject is now becoming more and more urgent, especially after Vietnam’s decision to exempt visa for travelers coming from 5 countries which are Spain, France, Germany, UK and Italy.
A new regulation on visa exemption for 45 nations has been enacted by Indonesia’s Government this June in order to enhance diplomatic relations and boost tourism.

 There were also opinions recommending visa discounts and visa exemption for ASEAN region.
The chairman also added that the online Visa program which was operated 2 years ago did not function well and was uncomfortable.

However, Mr. Ang Kim Eang, the President of Cambodia Association of Travel Agents, believed that visa exemption was not the best idea and that more researches needed to be done about that. There are also concerns about the national security when entry is made simpler.

According to statics released by the Ministry of Tourism’s Statistics and Tourist Information Department, there has been an increase of 7 % in the number of international visitors coming to Cambodia recorded last year. Cambodia’s top tourist suppliers were South Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, France, USA, China,  Japan, Australia and Malaysia.

Jul 27, 2015

Laos Passport and Visa Requirements

Papers required
Return ticket
Other EU

If you come from the nations mentioned in the table above, you are required to have a passport which is valid for a minimum time of 6 months to enter Laos.
You may not need to show a return ticket if travelling overland. However, an itinerary from your travel agent would be useful in some cases.
If you are the citizen of the nations in the table above, you can be granted for a thirty – day visa. This is applicable to arriving on road, through ports of entry and also crossing river borders. Remember to bring with you two photos which are passport – sized for the visa.
You may also apply for a visa from the embassy beforehand.
Make sure that you get two stamps on your visa, an entry stamp and the exit one and remember to double – check the dates of these stamps.
Note:  If you are not from the mentioned nations in the table, it is advisable for you to contact the embassy for the visa requirements.

It would take you around US$35 for a visa on arrival (the price depends on your nationality). A visa in advance may cost you about US$50 (the price depends on your nationality).

A visa is normally valid for 30 days. A visa obtained from the embassy beforehand is usually valid for a stay up to 30 days within 2 months from the date of issue.

Extension of stay
Your 30 – day visa can be extended up to 60 days at the Department of Immigration in Vientiane with the fee of US$2 for each day. Bear in mind that overstaying means paying US$10 for each day.

Applications for:  officially recognized tour operators or the embassy’s consular section. Visas can be obtained from many travel agents on Khao San Road in Bangkok or from the Embassy of Laos in Bangkok, Thailand. Laos Embassy was reopened in UK in 2014.

Sufficient funds:
There‘s not much chance of you having to show proof of sufficient funds. However, your are advised to bring with you a salary slip, tax return or some of your last bank statements.
Entry with children
If you are travelling with children, you may be asked to show the proof of parental responsibility. Hence, bring with you the papers just in case.
Entry with pets
A veterinary certificate is required for entrance.
Embassies and tourist offices
Embassy of the Lao PDR in the USA
Opening times: Monday –Friday : 09:00am – 04:30 pm.
Phone: (202) 332 6416. Web: www.laoEmbassy.com.

Embassy of the Lao PDR in the UK
Opening times: Monday –Friday : 09:00am – 06:00 pm.

Phone: 0207 307 5454. Web: asiahouse.org

Vietnam suffers dramatic decline in tourism

According to Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, in this June, 529,445 international visitors had been attracted to Vietnam, which indicated a slight fall of 1.9% against the same month last year.

13,430 visits from Thailand were recorded this month. This number showed a fall of 34.4% compared to the same period last year.

Even though there was a drop of 16.7% in the number of visits, China was still the leading supplier with 113,906 visits. The other leading suppliers were Malaysia, South Korea, the United States and Japan.

Cambodia slipped out of top 10 suppliers with 11,739 visits, representing a significant fall of 63.2%.
 The majority of Vietnam’s leading suppliers come from the Asia/Pacific region. The fourth and eighth positions belong to US and Russia, a trend that has remained unchanged for more than 5 years.

Most of the visits in this June arrived at the two key aviation gateways, which are Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.

3,804,636 international visitors have been welcomed in Vietnam from January to June this year. In comparison with the same period last year, there was a dramatic decrease of 11.3%.

For more than a year, there has been a decline in the number of visitors in every month. The latest fall is the smallest decrease in percentage terms. This means that Vietnam’s trade can be optimistic about their future if more promotions are launched. The Government also believes that with easier visa issues and visa – free travel, the trend will sure to be reversed.

Jul 10, 2015

Free wi – fi for festival in Nha Trang

Until the end of July, free wi-fi are accessible for every visitor coming to Nha Trang.

A branch in Khanh Hoa of VNPT, the Vietnam Vietnam Post and Telecommunication Group is in charge of providing this service.

Tourists are able to use free wi-fi along the way from Nha Trang Airport to the LaoDong Cultural House.

The service is sure to help tourists make the most out of Nha Trang Sea Festival, which will take place from July 11th to 14th. Visitors can communicate with their friends on social network and upload images of this amazing event at the same time.

Tourists attending the festival may enjoy sport, tourism and cultural activities including the semi-final round of a beauty contest called Miss Universe Vietnam, an exhibition of maritime heritage and a document display of Truong Sa and Hoang Sa archipelagos.

Concerts performed by local and foreign art troupes and a street festival are also the highlights of the event.

This biennial festival, one of the largest festivals of the city, is a part of an effort to promote the cultural values of the sea. More than 100,000 visitors are expected to attend the event. Touists coming to Vietnam may enjoy free wi – fi in Da Nang, Cat Ba, Can Tho, Tam Dao, Hue, Hoi An, Ha Long and Da Lat.

Minions promote Vietjet Air’s image

A collaborative deal between Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment and Vietjet has been signed recently. According to this deal, images of the Minions, the cartoon characters in a cartoon called Despicable Me, will be painted on the body of the brand new aircraft of the Airline.

It is now commonplace to see low – cost carriers selling their advertising space on the bodies of the plane. In this case, the partner is a movie company.

The Airline has previously made a deal with Walt Disney to paint the characters from Planes, a cartoon movie. The famous Mickey and Minnie had also been featured and the Airline sponsored tours for the actors from Mickey’s Magic Show when they visit Vietnam.

The Airline features not only cartoon characters but also slogans and logos symbolizing Vietnam’s images on its own aircrafts.

AirAsia is considered to be the master of advertising with campaigns painted on the bodies of almost every aircraft in the fleet and also inside the crafts ( apart from the WC).

EVA Air is wide known for its long – term collaboration with the brand Hello Kitty. vehicles. This Airline even established flying clubs for the young passengers and painted logos on the ground vehicles.

More and more Yoga classes in Cambodia

With an aim to improve the experience of visitors in Cambodia, the Ministry of Tourism of this country is encouraging opening yoga classes at tourist sites.

Dr. Thong Khon, the Minister of Tourism of Cambodia believed that the citizens in his country should practice Yoga, a healthy exercise. Opening more yoga classes means more options for tourists to choose. Visitors are bound to be fascinated when they can learn something new during their trip.

There are going to be yoga classes in Siem Reap, the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh and at resorts.

He also stated that there would be Yoga classes at resort to promote peace the following year.

The first International Yoga Day took place in Phnom Penh and Siem Riep on June 21st. This is because of the UN’s decision to make June 21st the International Day of Yoga. The idea of the day was first presented to the Un by the India’s Prime Minister and achieved 175 supporting votes, the highest number of votes ever for a decision.

Cambodia promotes travelling in the national park

A request to open helicopter flights between Phnom Penh and Preah Soramrit Kossamak Kirirom National Park (which is in Kampong Speu province) has been submitted to the Ministry of Environment of Combodia by A2A Town (Cambodia), a Japanese firm.

With these helicopter flights, rich visitors are sure to be attracted to the brand new resort in the national park.

According to Agence Kampuchea Presse, this project has been mentioned in an inauguration ceremony of the company’s resort by Mr. Say Samal, the Minister of Environment.

Mr. Takeshi Izuka, the President of A2A Town (Cambodia) declared that the company had poured USD 500 millions into the project in order to create a luxurious natural resort, the Kirirom Pine Resort.

A2A Town (Cambodia) has been granted the rights to construct in Kirirom National Park since 2011on a 2000 hectare economic concession land.

Most of the park is situated in Phnom Sruoch district with the smaller part in Koh Kong province.

The park expands over the part in the East of the Cardamom Mountains. It is 112 kilometers from Phnom Penh of Highway No.04 on the road to Sihanoukville.

Lying at 675-metre (2,215 ft) above sea level, Kirirom was Cambodia’s first officially designated national park.