The most popular flower in the northern port city of Haiphong, the flamboyant flower, ‘flame flower’ or royal Poinciana – was the main theme of a festival held in the city during the weekend.
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The Flamboyant Festival kicked off on the night of June 9 with a colourful parade involving thousands of residents and tourists, artists, and performers.
Floats were decorated with the red blossoms while people dressed up in eye-catching red costumes.
A contest for the ‘best red costume’ bought many smiles at the opening night, which also featured a fireworks display.
Many street performances highlighted the beauty of the city, especially the mass choir of 1,000 people which performed the city ‘anthem’ Thanh pho Hoa Phuong Do (The City of Red Flamboyant) by songwriter Luong Vinh.
Hundreds of people joined a bicycle parade along the main road where 4,000 flamboyant trees grow, connecting the city’s centre with Do Son beach.
The city also launched a walking street and a night market to mark the occasion.
The festival is an activity to kick-start National Tourism Year 2013, which highlights tourism in the Red River Delta region and promotes the city among tourists and investors.
Local authorities expect it will become a ‘trademark’ cultural and tourism product.