Photo contest to honour Việt Nam’s cultural heritage
Update: May 26, 2021
A photo contest aiming to honour Việt Nam’s cultural heritage has opened for entries from all comers.
A royal entrance in the Huế Imperial Palace. — Photo
An activity to celebrate the Day of Vietnamese Heritage on November 23, the contest is organised by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in collaboration with the Department of Cultural Heritage and the Department of Fine Arts, Photography, and Exhibition.
The contest, the first of its kind, aims to find fine photography works on tangible heritage in Việt Nam to introduce them to people in the country and abroad.
The tangible heritage includes historical, cultural and architecture relics, as well as relics related to art, and the natural landscape.
The contest will receive entries from now until September 30.
The organisers hope the contest will evoke Vietnamese people’s pride and love for their homeland.
The judging board consists of professional photographers from the Việt Nam Association of Artistic Photography, and experienced experts from the Cultural Heritage Association of Việt Nam.
An awards ceremony, together with an exhibition showcasing the winning photos, is slated for November in Hà Nội.
The winning photos will be published in media materials about the preservation and promotion of cultural heritage. In addition, a book featuring the best snaps will be published in December.
The Tràng An Landscape Complex in Ninh Bình Province so far is the only mixed cultural-natural site. — Photo
At present, Việt Nam is home to eight UNESCO-recognised world heritage sites, including five cultural heritages, two natural heritages, and one mixed site.  
The UNESCO cultural heritage sites include the Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long in Hà Nội, the Citadel of the Hồ Dynasty in Thanh Hóa Province, the Complex of Huế Monuments in Huế, Hội An Ancient Town, and Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary in Quảng Nam Province.
Hạ Long Bay in Quảng Ninh Province and Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park in Quảng Bình Province are the UNESCO natural heritage sites.
The Tràng An Landscape Complex in Ninh Bình Province is the only mixed cultural-natural site.
A parade at the Saint Gióng Festival in Sóc Temple. — Photo
The country also has other UNESCO-recognised tangible and intangible cultural heritage.
Huế royal court music was recognised by UNESCO as The World’s intangible Cultural Heritage in 2003. In 2005, the Cultural Space of Gong in the Central Highlands was listed as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
In 2009, quan họ (love duet) folk singing was recognised by UNESCO for its rich cultural values, social customs, art performances, song techniques, beautiful lyrics and customs. In the same year, ca trù ceremonial singing was listed as a World Intangible Cultural Heritage and Oral Masterpiece of Humanity in urgent need of protection.
In 2011, the Saint Gióng Festival in Phù Đổng and Sóc temples and xoan singing of Phú Thọ Province became intangible cultural heritages of humanity in urgent need of protection.
In 2012, the worship of the Hùng Kings in Phú Thọ was recognised by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The ví dặm folk singing of Nghê An and Hà Tĩnh provinces became an intangible cultural heritage of humanity in 2014.
The country also has three documentary heritages recognised by UNESCO, including the woodblocks from the Nguyễn Dynasty which consist of 34,618 wooden plates which were engraved with Chinese Vietnamese scripts and used to print books in Việt Nam in the 19th and 20th centuries, the 82 stone steles at the Temple of Literature in Hà Nội dedicated to doctorate holders under the Lê-Mạc dynasties from the 15th to the 18th century, and the woodblocks of Buddhist scripture at the Vĩnh Nghiêm Pagoda in Bắc Giang Province.