The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Sites are places of importance to cultural or natural heritage as described in the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, established in 1972.[1] Vietnam accepted the convention on 19 October 1987, making its natural and cultural sites eligible for inclusion on the list.[2] As of 2021, there are eight World Heritage Sites in Vietnam, including five cultural sites, two natural sites, and one mixed.[2] Vietnam holds the second-highest number of World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia, after Indonesia with nine sites.[3]

The Complex of Huế Monuments was the first site in Vietnam to be inscribed on the list at the 17th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Colombia in 1993.[4] Two cultural sites from Quảng Nam were listed in 1999: Hội An Ancient Town and Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary. Hạ Long Bay and Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng National Park were listed as natural sites in 1994 and 2003, respectively, before receiving the extension on the criteria for exceptional geological and geomorphologic values by the World Heritage Committee in 2000 and 2015.[a][b] The Central Sector of Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long was inscribed in 2010, coinciding with the Millennial Anniversary of the Thăng Long capital.[5] The most recent site added was Tràng An Scenic Landscape Complex in 2016, the first mixed site in Southeast Asia.[6]

After being recognized, the sites became popular tourist attractions. They are also considered to be driving forces behind the growth of tourism in the country.[7] According to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Tràng An was the most popular World Heritage Site in Vietnam, attracted more than 6 million visitors and raised 867.5 million VND in 2019 alone.[8] In addition to its World Heritage Sites, Vietnam also maintains seven properties on its tentative list.

World Heritage Sites

UNESCO lists sites under ten criteria; each entry must meet at least one of the criteria. Criteria i through vi are cultural, and vii through x are natural.[9]

Key
Indicates mixed heritage site
List of World Heritage Sites in Vietnam
Site Image Location (municipality) Year listed UNESCO data Description
Central Sector of Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long Đoan Môn Gate of Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long in 2015 Hanoi 2010 1328; (ii), (iii), (vi) (cultural) Built in the 11th century by the Lý dynasty, the Imperial Citadel contains buildings that parallel the late 19th-century architecture and the Southeast Asian culture. The site played an important role in the regional political power of Đại Việt for almost thirteen centuries.[5][10]
Citadel of the Hồ Dynasty The South gate of Tay Do castle, a building in the Citadel of the Hồ Dynasty, in 2008 Thanh Hóa 2011 1358; (ii), (iv) (cultural) The Hồ dynasty built the citadels in 1397, which lie between the and Bưởi rivers. The site shows a concept of royal power, new trends in technology and commerce in an imperial city. Its construction adapted the Confucian philosophy within a primarily Buddhist culture.[11][12]
Complex of Huế Monuments Meridian Gate of the Imperial City of Huế in 2017 Huế 1993 678; (iv) (cultural) The Complex of Huế Monuments is located in and around Huế, the former imperial capital of Vietnam under the Nguyễn dynasty. Despite having suffered from the effects of three wars, the site is well-preserved and remains a remarkable construction of the 19th century.[13][4]
Hạ Long Bay Ha Long Bay in 2008 Quảng Ninh 1994[a] 672; (vii), (viii) (natural)[a] Ha Long Bay features more than 1600 karst limestone pillars and isles in various shapes and sizes, developed in a warm and wet tropical climate. The limestone monolithic islands rise from the ocean, topped with thick jungle vegetation. Several of the islands are hollow, creating enormous caves.[15][16]
Hội An Ancient Town Houses with small shops in Hoi An in 2020 Quảng Nam 1999 948; (ii), (v) (cultural) Located near the mouth of the Thu Bồn River, Hội An Ancient Town comprises timber frame buildings, which include architectural monuments, an open market, and a ferry quay. Its architecture reflects a blend of indigenous and foreign influences from Chinese, Japanese and European cultures. It is an example of a Southeast Asian trading port dating from the 15th to the 19th century.[17][18]
Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary in 2019 Quảng Nam 1999 949; (ii), (iii) (cultural) Mỹ Sơn is a cluster of abandoned and partially ruined Hindu temples, constructed between the 4th and the 13th century by the kings of Champa. The temples are dedicated to the worship of the Hindu divinity Shiva. The site reflects the spiritual and political life in the Champa Kingdom.[19][20]
Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng National Park A cave in Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng National Park in 2007 Quảng Bình 2003[b] 951; (viii), (ix), (x) (natural)[b] Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng is located in the middle of the Annamite Range, and shares its boundary with Laos's Hin Namno National Park to the west. Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng has a diverse limestone karst ecosystem, containing terrestrial and aquatic habitats, forests, savanna, and large caves. The Sơn Đoòng Cave is considered to have the world's largest natural cave passage.[22][23]
Tràng An Landscape Complex Tam Cốc Rice Valley of Tràng An Scenic Landscape Complex in 2013 Ninh Bình 2016 1438bis; (v), (vii), (viii) (mixed)[c] Tràng An is a scenic area located at the southern margin of the Red River Delta. It contains limestone karst peaks with valleys. There are archaeological traces of human activity for more than 30,000 years, dating back from the Neolithic and Bronze Ages. Hoa Lư was the ancient capital of Vietnam, established in the 10th and 11th centuries.[6][24]

Tentative list

In addition to the sites inscribed on the World Heritage List, member states can maintain a list of tentative sites that they may consider for nomination. Nominations for the World Heritage List are only accepted if the site was previously listed on the tentative list.[25] As of 2021, Vietnam has recorded seven sites on its tentative list.

Key
# Indicates mixed tentative sites
List of tentative sites in Vietnam
Site Image Location (municipality) Year listed UNESCO data Description
The Area of Old Carved Stone in Sapa One of the engraved stones of Sapa in 2011 Lào Cai 1997 959; (mixed) The site is home to more than 200 stones and megaliths, carved with different images and complicated designs. Images of mountains, hills, and fields can be seen, as well as traces of three kinds of writing system: the pictographs of Han Chinese, talismans of Tày and Dao ethnic groups.[26][27]
Ba Bể – Na Hang Natural Heritage Area Ba Bể Lake in 2014 Tuyên Quang and Bắc Kạn 2017 6262; (vii), (x) (natural) Ba Bể – Na Hang Natural Heritage Area is covered by primeval forests on limestone mountains with diverse fauna and flora. The karst mountains are surrounded by Gâm River, Năng River, and Ba Bể Lake. Many caves have existed for over 10,000 years. The nominated area consists of four main parts: Ba Bể National Park, Nam Xuân Lạc Nature Reserve, Na Hang Nature Reserve, and Lâm Bình Protection Forest.[28][29]
Cát Tiên National Park[d][e] Water buffaloes at the Cát Tiên National Park in 2008 Đồng Nai 2006 5070; (vii), (ix), (x) (natural) Cát Tiên National Park is a natural resource with many rare and endemic genes of fauna and flora. It is a part of the wet tropical forest complex and one of the few natural forests remaining in Vietnam. The national park takes an active part in the control of floods and protects the water source of Trị An Dam.[35][36]
The Yên Tử Monuments and Landscapes Part of the Yen Tu landscape in 2016 Quảng Ninh, Bắc Giang, and Hải Dương 2014 5940; (ii), (iii), (v), (vi) (cultural) The site is a series of monuments and landscapes located on Đông Triều mountain range. This is the homeland of the Trần dynasty of Đại Việt in the 13th and 14th century, and the ancestral land of Trúc Lâm Zen Buddhism. This area is known for its landscapes, and historical-cultural relics. The site encompasses Yến Tử – Đông Triều relic area, West Yến Tử relic area, and Côn Sơn – Kiếp Bạc – Thanh Mai relic area.[37][38]
Con Moong Cave Thanh Hóa 2006 5072; (cultural) The site, located within the Cúc Phương National Park, was excavated by archaeologists in 1976. The place contains cultural traces of residents of Sơn Vì, Hòa Bình and Bắc Sơn cultures, where people resided continuously from 13,000–7,000 years ago. The archaeological site consists of 10 different soil layers.[39][40]
Hạ Long BayCát Bà Archipelago View from Ngu Lam Peak of Cat Ba National Park in 2003 Quảng Ninh and Hải Phòng 2017 6177; (vii), (viii), (ix), (x) (natural) Hạ Long Bay was recognized by UNESCO as a World Natural Heritage site twice in 1994 and 2000. In 2017, Cát Bà Archipelago was submitted as an extension of Hạ Long Bay. Both sites are high biodiversity centers, with more than 700 limestone mountains and islets.[41][42]
Hương Sơn Complex of Natural Beauty and Historical Monuments # One of the zone's cave pilgrimage sites. Hanoi 1991 960; (mixed) The site is an important ecological zone and cultural zone, with archaeological sites dating back 10,000 years and geological formations dating back 200 million years. The Perfume Pagoda Festival is held annually, with the participation of hundreds of thousands of people. The Hương Sơn Complex comprises three groups of temple sites: The Hương Tích group, The Long Vân group, and The Tuyết Pagoda Group.[43]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c Hạ Long Bay was first listed as a natural site in 1994 under criterion (vii). Six years later, in 2000, the World Heritage Committee extended its recognition for exceptional value for geomorphology, which satisfies the criterion (viii).[14][15]
  2. ^ a b c Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng National Park was first listed as a natural site in 2003 under the criterion (i). Twelve years later, in 2015, the World Heritage Committee renominated and extended its recognition for exceptional geological and geomorphologic values, which satisfies the (viii), (ix) and (x) criteria.[21][22]
  3. ^ Tràng An Scenic Landscape Complex is the first mixed site in Southeast Asia.[6]
  4. ^ UNESCO previously listed Cát Tiên National Park as the 411th Biosphere Reserve Zone in the world in 2001. In 2005, the Ramsar Convention recognized Bàu Sấu Wetlands (belongs to the park) as one of the Ramsar Sites of the world.[30][31][32]
  5. ^ Following a 2013 report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, in which advising not to inscribe Cát Tiên National Park as a natural World Heritage Site, Vietnam withdrew its application weeks before the annual World Heritage Committee in June 2013. The report identified two proposed hydropower projects, quarrying, unregulated tourism, illegal trade in species and poaching as major threats.[33][34]

References

  1. ^ "The World Heritage Convention". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Archived from the original on 11 March 2021. Retrieved 21 September 2010.
  2. ^ a b "Vietnam". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Archived from the original on 9 March 2021. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  3. ^ "World Heritage List". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Archived from the original on 14 March 2021. Retrieved 2 July 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Hue Imperial City – World Cultural Heritage". Voice of Vietnam. 17 May 2018. Archived from the original on 1 May 2021. Retrieved 17 May 2018.
  5. ^ a b Đăng Định (1 August 2010). "Hoàng thành Thăng Long được công nhận di sản văn hóa thế giới" [Imperial Citadel of Thang Long is recognized as world cultural heritage]. Tuổi Trẻ (in Vietnamese). Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union. Archived from the original on 6 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  6. ^ a b c "Trang An receives UNESCO certificate as World Cultural and Natural Heritage site". Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. 29 January 2015. Archived from the original on 1 December 2020. Retrieved 29 January 2015.
  7. ^ "Giá trị di sản: 'Át chủ bài' trong chiến lược phát triển du lịch" [Heritage value: 'The trump card' in tourism development strategy] (in Vietnamese). Vietnamese Studies Department of Hanoi National University of Education. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
  8. ^ Minh Huyền (9 January 2020). "Số lượng khách du lịch tham quan 8 di sản thế giới tại Việt Nam tăng mạnh" [The number of tourists visiting 8 world heritage sites in Vietnam has increased sharply]. Tổ Quốc (in Vietnamese). Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. Archived from the original on 10 January 2020. Retrieved 11 December 2020.
  9. ^ "UNESCO World Heritage Centre – The Criteria for Selection". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Archived from the original on 12 June 2016. Retrieved 17 August 2018.
  10. ^ "Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long – Hanoi". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 1328. Archived from the original on 6 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  11. ^ "Citadel of the Ho Dynasty". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 1358. Archived from the original on 26 February 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  12. ^ Emmons, Ron (6 April 2017). "Destination Vietnam – Ho Citadel: Vietnam's unlikely UNESCO site". Thanh Hóa: CNN. Archived from the original on 26 January 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  13. ^ "Complex of Hue Monuments". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 678. Archived from the original on 26 February 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  14. ^ Nguyễn, Văn Tuấn (1 December 2020). "Vịnh Hạ Long đã được UNESCO công nhận là Di sản thế giới lần thứ hai về giá trị địa chất địa mạo như thế nào" [How is Ha Long Bay recognized by UNESCO as the Second World Heritage Site in terms of geomorphological value?] (in Vietnamese). General Agency for Tourism. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  15. ^ a b Nhật Thy (2 December 2020). "Tròn 20 năm Vịnh Hạ Long được công nhận là Di sản thiên nhiên thế giới lần hai" [Twenty years ago, Ha Long Bay was recognized as a World Natural Heritage for the second time] (in Vietnamese). Government of Vietnam. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  16. ^ "Ha Long Bay". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 672. Archived from the original on 2 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  17. ^ "Hoi An Ancient Town". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 948. Archived from the original on 27 February 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  18. ^ "Hoi An: 15 years as an UNESCO World Heritage Site". Nhân Dân. Communist Party of Vietnam. 9 December 2014. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  19. ^ "My Son Sanctuary". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 949. Archived from the original on 7 February 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  20. ^ "Mysteries of Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary unveiled through restoration". Việt Nam News. Vietnam News Agency. 14 July 2019. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  21. ^ "Phong Nha – Ke Bang wins 2nd UNESCO recognition". General Agency for Tourism. 7 June 2015. Archived from the original on 4 February 2020. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  22. ^ a b Lê, Phi Long (16 June 2018). "VQG Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng 15 năm được công nhận di sản thiên nhiên thế giới" [15 years after Phong Nha – Kẻ Bàng National Park was recognized as a World Natural Heritage]. Lao Động (in Vietnamese). Vietnam General Confederation of Labour. Archived from the original on 22 September 2020. Retrieved 16 June 2018.
  23. ^ "Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 951. Archived from the original on 14 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  24. ^ "Tràng An Landscape Complex". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 1438bis. Archived from the original on 25 January 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  25. ^ "UNESCO World Heritage Centre – Tentative Lists". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Archived from the original on 20 July 2017. Retrieved 25 October 2015.
  26. ^ "The Area of Old Carved Stone in Sapa". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 959. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  27. ^ "Bãi đá cổ Sa Pa: Cần có phương án bảo tồn cấp thiết" [The Area of Old Carved Stone in Sapa: An urgent conservation plan is needed]. Tuổi Trẻ (in Vietnamese). Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union. 10 July 2005. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  28. ^ "Ba Be – Na Hang Natural Heritage Area". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 6262. Archived from the original on 20 October 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  29. ^ "Viet Nam seeks UNESCO recognition for Ba Be – Na Hang natural heritage". General Agency for Tourism. 4 December 2017. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  30. ^ "Asia and the Pacific: 157 biosphere reserves in 24 countries". Man and the Biosphere Programme. July 2018. Archived from the original on 30 January 2021. Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  31. ^ Thu Giang (27 March 2013). "Discover Vietnam – Cát Tiên National Park". General Agency for Tourism. Archived from the original on 1 April 2020. Retrieved 27 March 2013.
  32. ^ "Bau Sau Wetlands and Seasonal Floodplain". Ramsar Convention. Archived from the original on 10 January 2021. Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  33. ^ H. Hương; C. Khanh; H. My (19 June 2013). "UNESCO vẫn xét duyệt Vườn quốc gia Cát Tiên?" [Is UNESCO still reviewing Cat Tien National Park?]. Tuổi Trẻ (in Vietnamese). Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union. Archived from the original on 12 September 2017. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  34. ^ "Two dams stopped after IUCN advises against World Heritage nomination". International Union for Conservation of Nature. 9 October 2013. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 9 October 2013.
  35. ^ "Cat Tien National Park". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 5070. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  36. ^ "Hoàn thành hồ sơ đề cử Vườn Quốc gia Cát Tiên là Di sản thiên nhiên thế giới" [Complete the nomination for Cat Tien National Park as a World Natural Heritage]. Công An Nhân Dân (in Vietnamese). Ministry of Public Security. 6 July 2006. Archived from the original on 16 March 2021. Retrieved 7 June 2021.
  37. ^ "The Yen Tu Complex of Monuments and Landscapes". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 6508. Archived from the original on 17 March 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  38. ^ Tình Lê (9 June 2020). "Tái lập hồ sơ trình UNESCO ghi danh Yên Tử là di sản thế giới" [Re-establish documents to submit to UNESCO to register Yen Tu as a world heritage site]. Vietnamnet (in Vietnamese). Ministry of Information and Communications. Archived from the original on 17 March 2021. Retrieved 7 June 2021.
  39. ^ "Con Moong Cave". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 5072. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  40. ^ Ngọc Minh (9 June 2020). "Đề cử hang Con Moong là Di sản văn hóa thế giới" [Nominated Con Moong cave as World Cultural Heritage]. Thanh Niên (in Vietnamese). Vietnam Youth Federation. Archived from the original on 21 March 2021. Retrieved 7 June 2021.
  41. ^ "Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 6177. Archived from the original on 21 October 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  42. ^ "Vịnh Hạ Long – quần đảo Cát Bà sẽ là Di sản thế giới" [Halong Bay – Cat Ba archipelago will be a World Heritage Site] (in Vietnamese). General Agency for Tourism. 15 February 2017. Archived from the original on 9 January 2018. Retrieved 7 June 2021.
  43. ^ "Hương Sơn Complex of Natural Beauty and Historical Monuments". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. 960. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2019.