Bringing Vietnam’s Cultural Heritage to the Public through the Festival

The yearly event strives to heighten the local community's consciousness and accountability in safeguarding and advancing the cultural heritage values of Vietnam.


The fourth Vietnam Cultural Heritage Festival kicked off with a ceremony at the Thang Long Imperial Citadel in Hanoi on the evening of November 22.

A folk art performance kicks off this year’s Vietnam Cultural Heritage Festival. Photo VNA   

Cultural activities to celebrate Vietnam Heritage Day (November 23) are underway, organized by the UNESCO Center for Culture and Sport Development under the Vietnam Federation of UNESCO Associations and Thang Long – Hanoi Heritage Conservation Center.

According to Nguyen Phuc Luu, Director of the UNESCO Center for Culture and Sports Development, the festival aims to honor the values of Vietnam’s cultural heritage to strengthen its sustainable preservation and promotion.

It is also an opportunity to popularize the elements of Vietnam’s intangible cultural heritage inscribed by UNESCO among local people and international friends.

The two-day festival on November 22 and 23 features ao dai (traditional long dress) performances by young designers to promote the gentle and beautiful image of Vietnamese women.

In addition, local and international festival-goers also have the opportunity to enjoy unique Vietnamese folk art forms such as Then singing of the Tay ethnic group from the mountainous region of Vietnam, Chau van singing from Hanoi, Bai choi games from Hoi An city in the central region, Quan ho love duet singing from the northern province of Bac Ninh, and others. They can also participate in some traditional folk games such as tug of war, stick pushing, monkey bridge crossing and To he making.

A Xam folk song performance at the Thang Long Imperial Citadel. Photo:
Vietnam Intangible Cultural Heritage Promotion Center (VICH)

As of 2023, there are eight World Heritage sites recognized in Vietnam, including five cultural sites, two natural sites, and one mixed site. Vietnam has the second highest number of World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia, behind Indonesia with ten.

The Hue Monuments Complex was the first site in Vietnam to be inscribed on the list at the 17th session of the World Heritage Committee in 1993. The Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long was inscribed in 2010, coinciding with the millennium anniversary of the capital Thang Long. The most recent site to be added was the Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex in 2016, the first mixed site in Southeast Asia.

Following their inscription, these sites have become popular tourist attractions, driving the growth of tourism in the country.