At the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, UNESCO officially announced the inclusion of the Vietnamese site to its list of world heritage sites. The announcement was made at 9:39 pm (Vietnam time) on the same day.
The Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago is an exceptional world heritage site, recognized by UNESCO as Vietnam’s first inter-provincial destination.
The Cat Ba Archipelago, located in Hai Phong, a prominent port city in northern Vietnam, is renowned for being the largest limestone archipelago in the country. With over 360 islands, it encompasses Cat Ba Island, situated to the south of Ha Long Bay.
According to a report from the government news site baochinhphu.vn, the archipelago has previously been designated as a world biosphere reserve by UNESCO.
Ha Long Bay, situated in the adjacent Quang Ninh Province, has been granted the prestigious status of being a world heritage site not once, but twice, by UNESCO in the years 1994 and 2000.
|Lan Ha Bay in Cat Ba Archipelago in Hai Phong City, northern Vietnam. Photo: Ngo Tran Hai An / Tuoi Tre|
According to a report by Thanh Nien (Young People) newspaper, the Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago cluster is renowned for its diverse range of island and ocean ecosystems.
As a recently designated world heritage site, this location is home to a diverse range of uncommon fauna and flora, and boasts the country’s largest maritime forest, spanning over 17,000 hectares.
The Prime Minister granted permission in September 2016 for the Hai Phong City administration to collaborate with authorities in Quang Ninh Province in order to strategize the official nomination of Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago as a prestigious world heritage site.
The Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago has been included in the esteemed World Heritage List for its awe-inspiring natural landscapes, characterized by enchanting vegetation-clad limestone islands, breathtaking limestone islets, and magnificent karst formations.
|Ha Long Bay – Cat Ba Archipelago is Vietnam’s first inter-provincial UNESCO-listed world heritage site. Photo: Tien Thang / Tuoi Tre|
Prior to the recent addition, Vietnam boasted eight UNESCO-recognized world heritage sites.
Some of the notable UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Vietnam are Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park in Quang Binh Province, Ha Long Bay, the Hue Imperial Citadel City in Thua Thien Hue Province, Hoi An Ancient Town and the My Son Sanctuary in Quang Nam Province, Thang Long Imperial Citadel in Hanoi, the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty in Thanh Hoa Province, and the Trang An Landscape Complex in Ninh Binh Province.
Associate Professor Dr. Le Thi Thu Hien, head of the Department of Cultural Heritage at the Vietnamese Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism, and Ambassador Le Thi Hong Van, head of the Permanent Mission of Vietnam to UNESCO, were present at the 45th session where sites nominated for the World Heritage List were reviewed.