Vietnam culture tour: Top 5 oldest pagodas in Vietnam


If you intend to go on a Vietnam culture tour, let’s take a look at top 5 oldest pagodas in Vietnam.

1. Dau Pagoda

Situated in Thuan Thanh district, Bac Ninh province, Dau Pagoda was built between 187 and 226 AD, making it well-known as the oldest Buddhist pagoda in Vietnam. In front of the pagoda, there is a yard hosting a three stories tower called Hoa Phong. Inside the tower, there are numerous valuable artifacts like a large bronze bell dating back 1793, a big bronze gong casted in 1817 and many statues of Gods in Buddhist legends.

Dau Pagoda in Bac Ninh province

Dau Pagoda in Bac Ninh province

Every year, on the 8th of April in Lunar Calendar, the Dau pagoda festival is taken place to pray for favorable weather and an abundant crop as well as showcases the cultural values of Buddhism in Vietnam. It is considered as one of the biggest Buddhist festivals in the Red River Delta, attracting thousands of tourists to take part in. During the festival, various traditional contests are held. Visitors can also admire unique performances performed by local people.

2. One Pillar Pagoda

One Pillar Pagoda

Amongst many beautiful tourist spots in Hanoi, One-Pillar Pagoda, located near Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, is a popular attraction that should be listed in your Hanoi tour.  Constructed between the years of 1028 and1054 during the reign of Emperor Ly Thai Tong, One Pillar Pagoda is considered as one of Vietnam’s most iconic pagoda. The special feature making it unique is that it was designed to look like a lotus and just has one concrete pillar and built in a lotus blossoms pond. Inside the pagoda, there is a shrine which is dedicated to Quan Am, the Goddess of Mercy.

3. Yen Tu Pagoda

Located about 60km from Halong City, Yen Tu pagoda is a complex of many beautiful pagodas. Every year, a large number of visitors come here to pray for good things, learn about Buddhist sect, or participate in Yen Tu festival. It includes 11 pagodas and several accommodated structures. The trekking trip up and down will take about 4 hours to reach Yen Tu's constructions. On the way, there are over 20,000 constructions with many valuable relics.

Dong Pagoda in Yen Tu Pagoda Complex

Dong Pagoda in Yen Tu Pagoda Complex

To admire the beauty of all the pagodas here, visitors should follow the Giai Oan Stream, then go to Tung and Truc streets to Hoa Yen Pagoda. From there, let’s walk to Mot Mai, Bao Sai pagodas. Situated on the highest place of Yen Tu is Dong Pagoda. People believe that they will have more good things in life if they can reach this pagoda. You can also choose cable car to reach Yen Tu peak instead of trekking.

4. Tran Quoc Pagoda

Tran Quoc Pagoda

Located on a small peninsula on the East of West Lake, Tran Quoc Pagoda is well-known as the oldest pagoda in Hanoi with more than 1,500 years of history. In particular, unlike other ordinary pagodas, Tran Quoc Pagoda was constructed in a very special and completed style of architecture dated centuries ago. Behind the worshipping shrine is the Buddhist trinity followed by corridors, 10 shrines, and the belfry. Inside the pagoda, there are many statues and lots of ancient steles. Among them, the most outstanding one is the statue trimmed with the gold of Sakyamouni Buddha's Parinirvana, which is recognized as a masterpiece of Vietnamese sculptural art. Thanks to these historical and architectural values, Tran Quoc Pagoda attracts a large number of tourists to pay a visit. Therefore, do not miss this pagoda during your Vietnam culture tour.

5. Sung Nghiem Dien Thanh Pagoda

Sung Nghiem Dien Thanh Pagoda

Sung Nghiem Dien Thanh Pagoda

Sung Nghiem Dien Thanh Pagoda is an ancient temple located in Van Loc village, Hau Loc district, Thanh Hoa province. The pagoda was constructed by King Ly Nhan Tong in 1116. Its stele has 1m2 large and 2m02 high and is decorated with dragons and garlands (from 1818). In the early 20th century, the pagoda fell into ruins. Until now, it just remains three pedestals in stone (lotus supported by lions) for Buddha statues. Considered as a national monument, Sung Nghiem Dien Thanh Pagoda is a place to worship the famous general Tran Hung Dao. Every year, Sung Nghiem Dien Thanh pagoda festival is held from 8 to 10 of February in Lunar Calendar. During the festival, this pagoda attracts a lot of Buddhists all over the country to come.


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