Tourists visit Da Nang city in 2000

Jan. 5 (VNA) -- The central city of Da Nang welcomed more than 393,700 tourists in 2000, a year-on-year increase of 29 percent.

Of these 185,230 were international tourists, mostly from China, France and the U.S., an 87-percent increase.

Da Nang City Tourism-Service turnover for the year was VND 255.63 billion (USD 18 million), almost 36.5 percent higher than the previous year.

Da Nang City Tourism Director Luong Minh Sam says the municipal People's Committee and city tourism agencies have invested in infrastructure, the upgrading of tourist sites and building entertainment centres.

Their focus has been the development of sea-side facilities such as the Non Nuoc-My Khe-Xuan Thieu beach cluster.

Da Nang City-based international travel agencies have coordinated with Thai Airways to provide servives for European and American visitors while seeking domestic tourists from Da Nang City and the central provinces for Bangkok.

The tourism service also worked with the Vietnam Airlines to open the Hong Kong-Da Nang route with two flights every week to attract tourists from the northeast Asia and Singapore Airlines to open the Singapore-Da Nang route.

The city has 65 hotels with 2,280 rooms of these one is rated five-star while 28 others have star status. Average room occupancy is 45 percent, rising to 55-60 percent at big hotels. The city has almost 600 cars, buses and vans to serve the tourism service.

Da Nang city has planned for the Son Tra sea, the Man Thai-Nam Tho sea-side and the Dong Nghe-Phuoc Nhon tourist site and completed a survey for the expansion of the Ba Na site.

It has also made tourism plans for the city.

Mr. Sam says the city is striving to welcome 452,000 tourists this year- 215,000 of them international.

The tourism service has joined joint ventures with Bac My An to build the southern Non Nuoc golf course for USD 10 million. The Le Da group, Australia, to build the Ngu Hanh Son (the five mountains) tourist complex for USD 200 million and Demathies of the U.S. to build the eastern My Da resort for USD 15 million.--VNA