Culture Culture

01/07/2018 - 07:21

Hue: Attracting tourists with the lotus festival

The lotus festival with the theme “The legend of a flower” is being held at Quoc Hoc Monument from late June to early July, making Hue more attractive to visitors.

Sticky rice in lotus leaf - a unique dish. Photo: Nguyen Hung

"The Legend" of Lotus

Mr Le Huu Minh, Acting Director of the Department of Tourism stated that the Department is implementing plans to organize monthly festivals and events to attract tourists. In addition to Hue Festival and Traditional Crafts Festival, the monthly festivals will help visitors participate in the festival atmosphere when they arrive in Hue at any time of the year.

These festivals may be smaller in scale but will create a regular focus. The festivals will also be a confirmation of the value of the brand, of tourism, and of the uniqueness of Vietnam in general and Hue in particular.

Around April and May of the Lunar year is the lotus season in Hue. This is the reason why the first festival in the plan has the theme about lotus flowers. According to the organizers, the festival will form a space to honor the essence of the lotus; bring about an "honest, good, and aesthetic" image of the lotus symbol through the inventive products created from this material.

Products made from lotus materials will be on display at the festival. Photo: Hoang Hai

The festival is divided into 4 spaces, including: "Lotus hue", which is the main stage where the performance of the “lotus” ao dai collection takes place; "Lotus taste", a cuisine space where activities relating, and dishes made from lotus are introduced to the public; "Lotus color", the area where lotus artworks are on display; and "Lotus form", the space where a number of traditional crafts that use images of the lotus are featured.

Mr Tran Dinh Minh Duc, Head of Travel Management, Department of Tourism said that, in the four spaces, the space "Lotus taste" promises to be the main attraction, featuring booths designed with materials such as palm, bamboo, lotus flowers and lotus leaves. Here, famous culinary artists display, introduce and serve the dishes made from lotus.

To add to the liveliness and meet the needs of guests, the dining space also has the stalls selling fast food and street food. The “Lotus taste” space is open all day for tourists.

Performing certain traditional occupations related to the lotus would create interesting impression on visitors. The traditional crafts include trucchi products, embroidery paintings of lotus flowers, lotus conical hats, Thanh Tien paper lotus flowers, etc. Here, visitors can experience making these unique products with the artisans. These products can become special souvenirs that visitors can bring back home to their friends and relatives. In the afternoons, there are folk games such as ‘bài chòi’, a traditional card games where players sit in huts, bag jumping… in order to create an exciting space, serving diversified needs of local people and of visitors traveling to Hue.

The Department stated that, initially, the venue selected was in places where there are real lotus flowers, amongst which, Tinh Tam Lake was the most ideal choice. However, this year, there are not many lotus flowers in Tinh Tam Lake. Therefore, Quoc Hoc Monument and Ly Tu Trong Park, located in the heart of the city, were chosen as they will be more convenient for visitors to take part in the festival.

Hue lotus flowers. Photo: Doan Quang

Promoting tourism

The Department of Tourism informed that the festival is directed towards many types of visitors, both domestic and international tourists. The festival is also aimed at potential customers who are passionate about the pure beauty of flowers, handmade products, and ao dai.

The lotus festival is held from June 29th to July 1st. According to the tourism industry leaders, the lotus festival is the first step in the plan to organize regular festivals in the following months. In the following months, a kite festival, food festival, tea festival ... would be organized. Mr Le Huu Minh said that Hue tourism has long been lacking periodic and frequent tourism products. With this organization, it is believed that Hue will be more exciting; and, more choices of night entertainment will be available when the festival takes place.

The lotus is the main theme of the festival. Photo: Bao Minh

Artist Than Van Huy expressed that there have been different events to promote traditional crafts but a festival solely dedicated to the lotus flower has not yet been held. Through the festival, traditional craft products in general and Thanh Tien paper lotus flowers in particular, have the opportunity to come closer to visitors. That is the motivation for artisans to keep their crafts.

According to Mr Le Huu Minh, besides the lotus festival, there will be many festivals related to various Vietnamese cuisines. These are the activities to build Hue to be the food capital of Vietnam. The more important point here is the dishes that are rarely introduced to tourists are now brought onto the table. This is also a way to preserve the delicious dishes for Hue cuisine.

By Duc Quang