Tourist ships on Ha Long bay (Source: VNA)
The figures represented year-on-years rises of 20 percent and 25 percent, respectively, according to the provincial Tourism Department.
The department attributed the increases to the inauguration of Bach Dang bridge and Ha Long-Quang Ninh highway, which has helped reduce travel time from Hanoi, Hai Phong city and Thai Binh and Nam Dinh provinces to Quang Ninh.
It also reported that the local tourism sector earned around VND170 billion (USD7.28 million) during this occasion. The number of tourists staying overnight reached 40,000, and the rate of occupancy at local three- to five-star hotels surpassed 80 percent.
Also during the three-day period, 1,400 ships took more than 30,000 tourists, including 12,000 foreigners, on sight-seeing tours on Ha Long Bay - a UNESCO-recognised World Heritage Site in the province.
To lure visitors, hotels and entertainment complexes in the locality launched numerous attractive promotion programmes.
New destinations in Quang Ninh also attracted tourists, such as Van Don, Quan Lan, Minh Chau and Co To islands.
With a range of stunning landscapes, clear turquoise sea and spectacular limestone pillars together with numerous tourism investment projects, Quang Ninh boasts huge potential to develop tourism.
The province has a coastline of more than 250 kilometres and over 2,000 islands, two-thirds of the total number in Vietnam. The spectacular stretch of coast connects the UNESCO-recognised World Heritage Site of Ha Long bay with majestic natural scenery, Bai Tu Long bay, Van Don and Co To islands and Tra Co beach with Cat Ba National Park in the northern port city of Hai Phong.
Along with the renowned Ha Long bay, Quan Lan, Minh Chau, Ngoc Vung, Dai beaches in Van Don island district and Tra Co and Vinh Thuc in Mong Cai city have grown in stature among domestic and international tourists thanks to their breathtaking sea and coral reef.
Together with the Bach Dang bridge and Ha Long-Quang Ninh highway, Van Don International Airport, which will begin serving commercial flights in late 2018, is also expected to help attract more foreign holiday-makers to the province.
The airport is set to cater for nine air routes and be capable of serving some 7,000 passengers per day. It is hoped to have annual capacity of 2 - 2.5 million passengers by 2020 and 5 million by 2030.
By 2020, Quang Ninh aims to welcome 15-16 million tourists, including 7 million foreigners, and rake in VND30 trillion - VND40 trillion (USD1.3 billion - USD1.7 billion) in revenue. The tourism sector is expected to contribute 14-15 percent to the gross regional domestic product (GRDP).
Last year, Quang Ninh received 9.87 million tourists, including 4.28 million foreigners, up 18 percent and 23 percent respectively. The tourism sector pocketed over VND17.88 trillion (USD786.9 million), up 30 percent compared to the previous year, and contributed VND3.2 trillion (USD140.8 million) to the State budget, accounting for 11.9 percent of the local budget collection.
It welcomed 9.2 million tourists during the first eight months of this year, up 25 percent year-on-year and completing 77 percent of its target for the whole year.
The provincial Department of Tourism reported that the number of international holiday-makers to the locality exceeded 3.2 million, a rise of 18 percent against the same period last year, and fulfilling 65 percent of the yearly target.
During the period, the local tourism sector completed 73 percent of the yearly target, earning more than VND16 trillion (USD685 million), up 29 percent year-on-year.
This year, the province aims to attract over 12 million visitors, including 5 million foreigners./.