Vietnam emerged as Asia’s Leading Destination at the World Travel Awards for Asia and Oceania 2021, besting eight other countries including Singapore, China and Korea.
This is the third time the country has won the top award in the yearly competition dedicated to celebrating excellence across travel, tourism and hospitality industries. Vietnam was first named the region’s leading tourism destination in 2018, and got the same award in 2019.
Vietnam also took home the Leading Sustainable Tourism Destination award. Major tourism hotspots Hoi An and Halong Bay — both recognized as UNESCO heritage sites — won Leading Cultural City Destination and Leading Tourist Attraction, respectively. The country’s national tourism administration was also awarded Asia’s Leading Tourist Board.
Known for its diverse landscapes and abundance of natural and cultural attractions, Vietnam has become a tourist favorite in recent years. Beyond the world-famous Halong Bay, the island of Phu Quoc and the unspoiled ethnic tribal villages in the central highlands attract millions of tourists yearly.
Graham Cooke, Founder of World Travel Awards, says, “Our winners represent the very best of Asia and Oceania’s travel and hospitality sectors and my congratulations to each of them. They are all playing starring roles in spearheading the travel and tourism recovery.”
The World Travel Awards are based on votes cast by industry professionals and the public. Vietnam has also been nominated in nearly 50 categories for the World edition. Winners will be unveiled at the Grand Final Gala Ceremony in Moscow on November 26.
These latest awards are welcome news as Vietnam prepares to reopen and welcome international travelers back starting November. The country closed its borders in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, severely hurting its tourism-independent economy.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism announced last week that the provinces of Kien Giang, Khanh Hoa, Quang Nam, Danang and Quang Ninh will be the first to accept foreign tourists in the first phase of the country’s roadmap to the resumption of inbound travel. Vietnam aims to fully reopen to fully vaccinated tourists in June 2022.
For the first phase, all travelers must present proof of COVID-19 vaccination as well as a negative RT-PCR test result upon arrival. All hotel and transportation bookings must be pre-arranged as only selected accommodations have been confirmed to be part of the program. Travelers need to stay in one destination and must be tested for COVID after seven days before they can go elsewhere.
The second phase, which will start in January 2022, will see more destinations opened. Deputy PrimeMinister Vu Duc Dam told local media that the resumption of international tourism needs to happen quickly, but clarified that plans may change depending on the pandemic situation.
Here’s the complete list of Vietnam’s wins at the World Travel Awards 2021 for Asia and Oceania region:
- Leading Destination - Vietnam
- Leading Regional Airport - Van Don International Airport
- Leading Airline - Economy Class - Vietnam Airlines
- Leading Airport Lounge - VIP, CIP Lounge at Van Don International Airport
- Leading Beach Hotel - Muong Thanh Luxury Nha Trang Hotel
- Leading Boutique Resort - Silk Sense Hoi An River Resort
- Leading Cruise Port - Ha Long International Cruise Port
- Leading Cultural Airline - Vietnam Airlines
- Leading Cultural City Destination - Hoi An
- Leading Design Hotel - Hotel de la Coupole-MGallery
- Leading Green Resort - InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort
- Leading Hotel Residences - Premier Residences Phu Quoc Emerald Bay
- Leading Lifestyle Hotel - Hotel de la Coupole-MGallery
- Leading Luxury Family Resort - InterContinental Phu Quoc Long Beach Resort
- Leading Luxury Hotel Villa - Bai Bac Bay Villa
- Leading Luxury Resort - InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort
- Leading Luxury Resort & Spa - JW Marriott Phu Quoc Emerald Bay
- Leading National Park - Cuc Phuong National Park
- Leading Retreat - Avana Retreat
- Leading Sustainable Tourism Destination - Vietnam
- Leading Theme Park - Sun World Ba Na Hills
- Leading Themed Resort - Mercure Danang French Village Bana Hills
- Leading Tour Operator - Vietravel
- Leading Tourist Attraction - Ha Long Bay
- Leading Tourist Board - Vietnam National Administration of Tourism
- Leading Villa Resort - Premier Village Phu Quoc Resort
- Leading Water Park - Aquatopia Water Park
- Most Romantic Resort - InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort