Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark: An overview of outstanding activities of the year 2022

Friday - 13/01/2023 11:19

Non Nuoc Cao Bang was designated as a UNESCO Global Geopark in April 2018 due to its unique landscapes, geological, geomorphological, biodiversity and cultural values. In 2022, the Management Board of Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark has continued ít efforts to fulfill the assigned tasks, which resulted into remarkable achievements, especially, geopark promotion and communication, public awareness raising, international networking and cooperation, improvement of infrastructure at geosites, contributing to tourism development of Cao Bang province.

One of the most important activities of Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark in 2022 is its first UNESCO Global Geopark status revalidation in August 2022. After field mission, preliminary assessment of construction and promotion of facilities and infrastructures at heritage sites, activities related to conservation, geopark education, engagement of local communities, tourism development, etc, the UNESCO evaluators highly appreciated the efforts of Cao Bang provincial authorities and the coordination of departments and branches and local authorities in the implementation of tasks for the geopark development, and affirmed that Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark has been performing good practices, for example, applying modern technology to develop local products and the “Geopark ambassador club” as tool for geoeducation in schools.

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Mr. Truong The Vinh presented the 8th APGN 2024 candidature dossier in front of the Coordination committee member of APGN.

Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark has also been actively involved in the activities of the Global Geoparks Networks and regional Geoparks Network including meetings, conferences, workshops and training courses. In 2022, the Geopark Management Board advised the Provincial People's Committee and the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism to attend the 7th Asia Pacific Geoparks Network Symposium (7th APGN Symposium) in Thailand. The Cao Bang provincial delegation actively participated in activities in the framework of the Symposium. Also, at the Symposium, Cao Bang successfully defended the candidature dossier on hosting the 8th APGN Symposium in Cao Bang in 2024. The Symposium held in Cao Bang will be an opportunity for the province to continue to exchange experiences in geopark management, development and promotion with other geoparks and countries worldwide, enhance the promotion the image of Cao Bang tourism to national and international tourists, realizing the goal of Cao Bang tourism branding, concretizing the Resolutions of the Central Government, the provincial activity plan, which opens up many new opportunities for Cao Bang tourism, making positive and important contributions to the local tourism, gradually and firmly transforming tourism sector into a spearhead economic sector.

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The delegation of Indonesian Ministry of National Development Planning paid a study visit to Non nuoc Cao Bang UGGp

During the year, the Management Board of Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark continued to promote the image of Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark and its activities on social networks such as Website, Facebook, Instagram. The leaflets, guidebooks of the 3 geopark experience routes were redesigned and printed. Check-in panels were installed at outstanding geosites on the 3 experience routes; geopark information centers were upgraded. Currently, the Geopark Management Board are working on the final items in the infrastructure system of the 4th experience route and collaborating with Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark Management Board (Ha Giang) to conduct field surveys, select potential sites of geological, historical, natural and cultural values to establish the 5th route connecting Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark and Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark.

Activities on geopark communication and public awareness raising have always been carried out in accordance with the criteria of a UNESCO Global Geopark and the 6 recommendations for Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark since its evaluation mission. In 2022, Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark coordinated with local authorities to organize training courses on Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark and participatory tourism development planning, training on interpreting skills for English guides for the revaluation mission, training cooking techniques for geopark partners, restaurants, hotel and community-based tourism establishment in the Geopark territory, etc.

Regarding geopark education in schools, the “Geopark ambassador club” model continued to be applied and proved its effectiveness. Remarkably, The Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism in collaboration with the Department of Education and Training organized the competition on "Environmental protection initiatives in Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark 2022". The competition attracted 66 projects, of which 48 projects were from Secondary Schools and 18 projects are from High Schools in the Geopark.

In addition, the Geopark Management Board has been implementing activities regarding cultural preservation for sustainable tourism development associated with local livelihoods improvement, and climate change adaptation. For example, guiding and supporting Dia Tren traditional paper-making villagers to diversify products from traditional paper, developing new approach to preserve traditional craft for tourism development; Participatory, equitable and inclusive tourism destination management in Khuoi Ky stone village, Dam Thuy commune, Trung Khanh district: establishing a monitoring board for community tourism activities, guiding activities on food localization, landscape improvement, environmental protection, cultural and architectural protection, on-site waste separation, etc.; baseline field surveys for the implementation of environmentally friendly agriculture for sustainable tourism development in Hang Thoang hamlet, Dam Thuy commune, Trung Khanh district.

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Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark partners learning about equitable income sharing scheme in community-based tourism development in Giay ethnic people’s village (Dong Van karrst Plateau UGGp)

The Geopark Management Board also paid attention to the development of Geopark Partner Network including tourism service providers, accommodation establishments, restaurants, craft villages…and to create an enabling environment for local communities to thrive together. The Geopark Management Board has regularly been keeping contact with Geopark partners, conducted capacity building and study trips such as organizing a study trip for 30 Geopark partners to learn about experience in sustainable community-based tourism development and sharing equal benefits in community in Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark, Ha Giang.

Over the year, owning to the sound direction of the Provincial People’s Committee, the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism and coordination of relevant departments and local authorities that Non nuoc Cao Bang Geopark accomplished the above tasks, which, then, contributing to the overall socio-economic development of the province.

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