Vietnam Welcomes Returning French

Welcomes approximately 300,000 French visitors every year. French visitors often choose cultural and historical tours or eco tours. Most French visitors are interested in discovering the remnants of French culture in Vietnam history.

Visiting the Mekong Delta Region by boat tours, most French visitors often go to Can Tho and visit the Binh Thuy Old House which is a beautiful example of French architecture. Built in 1807, the Binh Thuy Old House is well-known. It has been chosen as a studio for many famous Vietnamese films and was the location for ‘The Lover’- the book and film written by French writer Marguerite Duras. French stage director JJ Annaud, stayed in this house for a week to film “the Lover”. Francis and Natalie, two French visitors said that they have known the house through The Lover and they decided to go to Vietnam to see this house.

Besides traveling, many French people have stayed and developed a career in Vietnam. Benoit Perdu who worked as a director for many French companies in Vietnam has been attracted by the Mekong Delta Region. He decided to establish a tourist company in Can Tho. His luxury boat Bassac has served visitors during tours through the Mekong River. He and his Vietnamese wife have run a Vietnamese restaurant in Can Tho for several years.

Da Lat, the city of thousand flowers and many French buildings is popular among many French visitors. In the 19th century, Doctor Yersin discovered the Langbian Highlands in 1893 and proposed the construction of Da Lat City. It was well designed in 1923 with the first plans drawn up by French architect and city planner Ernest Hebrard (who became more famous for designing much of Hanoi’s most striking colonial period buildings). Jaquelin- a French visitor talked in an enthusiastically said he visited Dalat every time he visited Vietnam. He wants to find a suitable job in Dat Lat so that he would be able to stay in Vietnam for long time. Many French tourists want to visit the K’long Ethnic Village to listen to a folk tale of K’Ho minority about a cockerel with nine spurs. The tale said that there was a couple in love. According to K’Ho ethnic custom, the groom’s family exacted the marriage gifts including 5 buffalos, 20 dresses and 5 cockerel. However this time, the groom’s family demanded a nine spur cockerel. As the girl climbed over mountains and crossed deep rivers to find the marriage gifts, she got lost in the forest and she didn’t return home. Since then, villagers built a bamboo giant nine spur cockerel to commemorate the poor girl. Nowadays, the statue of the cockerel which weighs a gigantic eight tonnes stands in front of K’Long Village and has become the village symbol.

In the Northern and Central regions, French tourists like visiting Hanoi, Sapa and Hoi an because they want to learn Vietnam culture features and French marks in these sites through the adopted culture and historical architecture.

France is among key markets of Vietnam’s tourism sector. More than 300,000 tourists visit Vietnam and the figure increases from five to six percent every year. Direct flights between Vietnam and France via the Charles De Gaulle International Airport (France) have helped visitors to travel easily. Moreover, the Vietnam tourism sector has strengthened its promotional activities in France. For example, the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism is opening a tourism promotion center in France. During the last few years, Vietnam Airlines has coordinated with the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism and the Vietnamese Embassy in France to hold a Vietnam Tourism Festival in France which has helped travel agents and companies share information, business opportunities and polish Vietnam’s image internationally. These activities have been promoted via popular websites such as Le Monde, Courrier International, Voyage and Telerama.

Source: VEN