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Grand Ho Tram Strip wins award

The Grand Ho Tram Strip resort and casino in Ba Ria-Vung Tau has won the 2015 Luxury Travel Guide Award for luxury hotel and spa

of the year in Viet Nam and the Business Destinations Travel Award for best luxury hotel in Viet Nam.

Its president, Michael Kelly, said it has also won another international prize without revealing details.

The Luxury Travel Guide Award is judged by an international panel of hospitality industry veterans and professionals for the Luxury Travel Guide, a UK-based publication.

The Business Destinations Travel Awards are given by the British magazine Business Destination whose readers are over 100,000 company owners, directors and other key people in the world of travel, tourism and MICE industry.

Quy Nhon, off the beaten path

Quy Nhon City in the south-central province of Binh Dinh has been named one of nine places in Southeast Asia to get off the beaten path and find unexplored gems by UK tourism website www.roughguides.com.

It said few tourists stop in Quy Nhon where the main industry remains fishing and the long sandy beaches remain the preserve of the Vietnamese.

It added that during Cham rule in the past this was an important commercial centre.

The website suggest to head up hear by xe om (motorcycle taxi) for sweeping views over the unspoiled countryside before returning to town for a seafood supper.

The other destinations in the list are trekking in Umphang in Thailand, seeing dolphins in Kratie in Cambodia and bargaining in Hsipaw in Myanmar. 

5-star Ha Noi-Thanh Hoa train

The Sai Gon Railway Company has begun operating a luxury train between Ha Noi and Thanh Hoa every weekend.

Targeted at meeting the demand to travel to Ha Noi from Thanh Hoa and neighbouring provinces, it stops in Nam Dinh, Ninh Binh, and Ha Nam provinces.

It leaves Ha Noi at 8.05am and reaches Thanh Hoa at 11.46am, and leaves in the return direction at 12.50pm.

The company is offering a 50 per cent inaugural discount. 

Standup paddle boarding in Ha Noi

A new water sport is being offered in Ha Noi's Ho Tay (West Lake) – standup paddle boarding.

The boards are available at sunset when the lake becomes calm, and costs VND120,000-200,000 per hour. 

35,600 people buy cheap tours in Q3

More than 35,600 passengers bought budget tours in the third quarter, taking the number during the year to over 100,000, almost double the previous year's.

The tours are sold as part of a domestic tourism stimulation programme organised jointly by Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet Air, Jetstar, Vasco and HCM City's Tourism Association.

The carriers cut fares to popular tourism destinations like Phu Quoc, Con Dao, Nha Trang, Da Lat, and Hue to enable travel firms to design the cheap tours, which are 20-40 per cent cheaper than normal. 

Lao Cai visitor numbers jump 42%

The number of visitors to the northern province of Lao Cai in the first nine months of this year jumped by over 42 per cent to 1.6 million.

Of them, more than 504,000 were foreigners, a 34.4 per cent rise.

Most of the visitors went to Sa Pa, Bac Ha, and Lao Cai city. Sa Pa alone attracted over 1 million.