More localities suspend festivals as Covid-19 risks loom large
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Tourists crowd by the iconic Hoai River in Hoi An, March 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Son Thuy.
Port city Hai Phong and Quang Nam Province, home to ancient town Hoi An, canceled all large-scale festivals amid high Covid-19 risks.
Hai Phong, around two hours east of Hanoi, decided to suspend its annual Red Flamboyant Flower Festival 2021 which was scheduled to take place from May 11-13 to feature 66 cultural, tourism and sporting events and activities.
A tourism festival titled 'Do Son-The Color of the Sea', another significant event to boost local tourism, set to begin on Friday, was also canceled to avoid big gatherings.
Hoi An, a UNESCO heritage site in central Quang Nam Province, suspended all crowded events during the national holiday (April 30-May 3).
With this decision, two large-scale programs planned for April 30 (Liberation Day) and May 1 (Labor Day), including a music festival and beach tourism event were abolished.
Quang Nam authorities said after the holiday, they would collect random samples from tourist sites and crowded areas for Covid-19 testing.
Southern Khanh Hoa Province, home to resort town Nha Trang, canceled two fireworks shows for April 30.
Mekong Delta hub Can Tho suspended the launch of its pedestrian street in Ninh Kieu on May 1, while popular highlands resort town Da Lat closed its pedestrian zone on Hoa Binh Street.
Previously, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, Quang Ninh, Nghe An and Quang Tri canceled fireworks or festivals following Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh's order early this week to limit crowded events amid the new context.
Health authorities have warned of higher Covid-19 risks during the upcoming holiday as the outbreaks linked to new variants in neighboring countries like Cambodia, Laos and Thailand have intensified.
Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh told a meeting Wednesday: "The pandemic situation is growing complex, especially in some neighboring countries, putting huge pressure on Vietnam."