Con Dao Island off Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province will become an ecological, cultural and historical tourist destination of regional and international stature by 2030 if authorities’ plans materialise.
Speaking at a ceremony to release the “Master plan for development of Con Dao National Tourist Resort, Ba Ria – Vung Tau Province through 2030” in Con Dao on November 19, Deputy Chairman of the Vung Tau People’s Committee, Nguyen Thanh Long, said the plan aims to remedy the seasonality in local tourism and combine tourism with conservation and promotion of the island’s historical – cultural values.
It also aims to help restructure the island’s economy by increasing its ratio of tourism and related services.
The Con Dao Island includes 16 islands and islets with a total area of 75.15 square kilometres and a sea area of around 14,000sq.km.
By 2020 the plan targets attracting more than 180,000 tourist arrivals and earning total revenues, at current prices, of VND1.2 trillion (US$53.6 million).
By 2030 the numbers are expected to rise to 300,000, including 120,000 international visitors, and VND2.8 trillion ($125.2 million), with 8,000 jobs being created.
The plan has been drawn up in consultation with Australia-based Hensen Partnership, and its key aim is to make Con Dao a leading example of sustainable tourism and eco-tourism in Vietnam and the region.
David Barnes, managing director of Hansen, said the plan would boost investment in Con Dao and improve the lives of residents through sustainable development.
Con Dao archipelago is situated off the south-east coast of Vietnam, 250km south of Ho Chi Minh City. Around 83 per cent of it is designated as a national park that is dominated by forested mountains that act as a stunning backdrop to a historic French colonial penal colony.
The surrounding seas, which are part of a marine park, are home to some of the best coral and diving in Vietnam and its largest turtle nesting habitat.