70 billion kip into Vangvieng by tourists

The renowned tourist place of Vangvieng has earned over 70 billion kip in revenue from visitors to the district this year. Head of the district tourism office, Mr Phouvieng Sikaysone, told the Vientiane Times during an interview yesterday it’s a big jump from the 53 billion kip made from tourism last year.

“The visitors visiting Vangvieng has risen from 148,000 in 2011, to over 177,000 people this year due to the 2012 Visit Laos Year campaign. A huge number of both foreign and domestic tourists are flocking to Vangvieng,” Mr Phouvieng said.

Vangvieng is one of Laos’ most popular tourist destinations, due to its bountiful caves, waterfalls, and water activities along the Nam Xong River. District Deputy Governor, Mr Phonkeo Khounphol, said recently that Vangvieng has hidden assets which can lure more tourists to the area.

“Vangvieng has a fascinating landscape created by nature. There are many mountain ranges in the district that contain a number of unusual and untouched sites,” Mr Phonkeo said.

The area has 37 caves, of which 27 are already open to tourists, while the Nam Xong River offers flying fox swings, inner tubes, and kayaks for the enjoyment of visitors. “The river is not used to water crops. It is used only for recreation and as a water source for local people, but is a central part of Vangvieng’s leisure activities,” Mr Phonkeo said.

Mr Phonkeo said at the last count Vangvieng had 99 guesthouses, 9 hotels, 11 resorts, 10 bungalow operations and more than 100 restaurants. One of the area’s newest attractions is Kaengyui waterfall, located in Naduang village, about 6km outside out of the main town.

Vangvieng is one of Vientiane province’s 13 districts. It is located in northern Laos, on Road No. 13 heading north towards Luang Prabang province. Eighty percent of the district’s terrain is mountainous. Still, over 70 percent of people grow crops as their primary source of income, with only 30 percent of the population working in the town’s service sector. Average annual per capita income is US$1,400.

Source: Vientiane Times