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|Halong Bay Heritage Marathon 2020 was officially kicked off on November 22|
This is the sixth consecutive year that the event is organised by Quang Ninh's Department of Culture and Sports in coordination with the Halong Municipal People's Committee, the Vietnam Athletics Federation and Duc Huong Anh Co., Ltd. in Halong.
Over the years, the marathon has been one of the city's annual international cultural and sports events, contributing to the building of the tourism image of Quang Ninh province.
With the efforts of the Organising Committee and the special assistance of the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS), the Halong Bay Heritage Marathon has been promoted at plenty of the world’s biggest international marathons such as Berlin Marathon, Tokyo Marathon, and Boston Marathon, improving its position across the international marathon map.
2020 is a particularly challenging year as COVID-19 has interrupted or cancelled major international marathons. Vietnam is one of the leading countries that could successfully bring the pandemic under control, so the organisers of Halong Bay Heritage Marathon expressed great pride in keeping the race schedule unchanged.
|Halong Bay Heritage Marathon 2020 took place with the backdrop of the great landscape of Halong city|
However, it also cannot avoid the impact of the health crisis. This year, the marathon has drawn about 2,500 attendants, slightly fewer than last year’s 3,000 attendants. Also in 2019, the event was recognised as “luring in the largest number of overseas arrivals to Quang Ninh.”
The marathon includes four competition categories: 5km, 10km, half marathon (21km), and full marathon (42km). Runners competing in the 42km distance will start at 5:30 a.m. on Sunday, November 22 at the Quang Ninh Planning, Fair and Exhibition Center on Tran Quoc Nghien Street, Halong. Other distances will depart an hour or 30 minutes later.
Halong Bay Heritage Marathon is designed for runners to experience the beauty of the landscape consisting of hundreds of islands, fishing villages across the shores, and the cable-stayed single-span bridge that once held a Southeast Asian record.
Halong's ideal weather and natural conditions this month have helped runners achieve the best results. Halong Bay Heritage Marathon is not just a sports event but has become a strong promoter of tourism in Quang Ninh province. The marathon's proceedings going live on social channels and networks will convey a vivid message about "Vietnam - a safe destination", which is important to the national image, especially to its tourism industry.
This year is particularly difficult for the global tourism industry. Notwithstanding, Vietnam continues to promote itself as a holiday destination, bagging coveted titles such as Asia's Leading Heritage Destination, Asia's Leading Asian Cultural Destination and Asia's Leading Culinary Destination at the 27th World Travel Awards in Asia.
The successful organisation of a large-scale marathon such as Halong Bay Heritage Marathon, having attracted thousands of international runners from all continents over the years, has contributed to making Vietnam, especially Halong, a desirable destination for foreign athletes, affirming Vietnam's prestige as a destination, especially Quang Ninh and Halong Bay. As an added boon, the successful hosting of the 2020 edition affirmed the government's dual-goal policies on epidemic prevention and socioeconomic development. The marathon is also a great boost to realise the target of attracting three million visitors to the tourist destinations of Quang Ninh province in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Along with being a running track that should be experienced at least once in a lifetime, the Halong Bay Heritage Marathon is a cavalcade of joyful colours and a great opportunity for runners and families to score happy moments, and especially enjoy the unique cuisine of fresh seafood.Certified by World Athletics and the AIMS as a standard running course, the Halong Bay Heritage Marathon has also been voted by Runner's World as one of the world's 150 most beautiful running tracks. The competition is also rated as one of the most professional and best-organised international marathons in Vietnam.