The unforgettably magnificent Buddhist capital: Yen Tu Pagoda
Recommended Visiting Time: 1 - 2 hours
Location: Uong Bi City, Quang Ninh Province
Highlights: Yen Tu Festival, Dong Pagoda.
Yen Tu Pagoda is a complex pagoda in Yen Tu Mountain, 60 kilometers away from Halong City and 110 kilometers from Hanoi.
Yen Tu Mountain was constructed by Tran Nhan Tong (1258-1308), who was the third king of the Tran Dynasty. In October 1299, Tran Nhan Tong gave up the mundane world and visited Yen Tu Mountain to train to become a Buddhist monk. In the mountains of Yen Tu, Tran Nhan Tong started Thien Phai Truc Lam, which is Zen Buddhism in Vietnam.
Nowadays, visiting Yen Tu Pagoda, you will hike on the uneven stone stairs and vertical rocky paths to get to the top of Yen Tu mountain which is 1,068 meters above sea level and covered in thick fog and cloud all year round. Alternatively, you can travel to the peak of Yen Tu Mountain by cable car, which should take more than 2 hours. If you would like to have a great tour of the spiritual world of Yen Tu Mountain, please contact Sdisco for further details.
The unforgettably magnificent destination for spiritual tourism: Cai Bau PagodaType: Vietnamese Buddhist Pagoda
History: about 15 years
Recommended Visiting Time: 1 hour
Location: Ward 1, Van Don, Quang Ninh
Highlights: Free vegetarian meals and accommodation.
Cai Bau Pagoda was constructed on the base of Phuc Linh Tu Pagoda 700 years ago. Nowadays, it has become an amazing spot for spiritual tourism in Halong Bay. Standing on the grounds of this pagoda, you can gaze at the beautiful mountains and the mesmerizing beaches that make you feel really comfortable.
Most work of order and security in the pagodas is well implemented by Buddhists and nuns. For the sake of preserving the Buddhist sanctuary, no one is allowed to sell souvenirs in the pagoda’s campus. In particular, if tourists want to enjoy vegetarian meals and stay overnight here, they will not have to pay any money.
Positioned near Bai Dai resort, the space in Cai Bau pagoda is not only tranquil but also extremely spiritual and pure. Combined with the bell and gong sound, you will feel very relaxed and comfortable. Moreover, this pagoda is 10 kilometers far from Van Don, so visitors can go there by private vehicles or by bus.
The unforgettably magnificent national site: Cua Ong TempleType: Vietnamese Buddhist Temple, National Intangible Cultural Heritage
History: over 15 years
Recommended Visiting Time: 1 hour
Location: Cua Ong Ward, Cam Pha town, Quang Ninh Province
Highlights: Tran Dynasty, Bai Tu Long Bay, Cua Ong Festival
Cua Ong temple is located in Cam Pha city, Quang Ninh Province. The temple is the worship place of Tran Quoc Tang and numerous national heroes of the Tran Dynasty. For many years, the temple has attracted hordes of tourists for its history. Cua Ong temple was constructed into 3 areas: Lower temple, Middle Temple and Upper temple.
The temple lies on a hill where you can witness Bai Tu Long Bay in the south. Behind the temple is entirely green mountains running through Mong Duong and Cam Pha.
The Cua Ong festival is celebrated annually. This festival is organized on January 2nd of the Lunar calendar until the end of the third lunar month. Tourists often participate in Cua Ong temple ceremonies from the beginning of the Lunar New Year. The route to travel is Con Son – Kiep Bac – Yen Tu – Cua Ong.
The festival is celebrated on a large scale, including a palanquin procession and a folk games festival such as tug of war, human chess, cock fighting and rice cooking contest, etc. The concert is held with a 15-minute firework display and more than 500 artists.
The largest pagoda in Halong Bay: Long Tien PagodaType: Vietnamese Buddhist Pagoda, Vietnam's Historical Sites
History: near 80 years
Recommended Visiting Time: 45 minutes
Location: Chua Long Tien Street, near Halong Market, in Quang Ninh Province
Highlights: Tran Dynasty, Duc Ong Temple, An Duong Vuong Temple, Bai Tho Mountain
Long Tien Pagoda is positioned in Bai Tho Mountain, which is the largest pagoda in Ha Long City. It was built in 1941 to worship Buddha and national heroes of the Tran Dynasty. Long Tien Pagoda attracts many locals and tourists everywhere who are Buddhists because of its sacredness.
Apart from the beauty, Long Tien Pagoda also attracts travelers with Long Tien Pagoda Festival which is held on the 24th day of the third lunar month. The festival consists of palanquin procession which starts from Long Tien Pagoda, then goes to Duc Ong Temple, An Duong Vuong Temple and returns. Moreover, there are traditional folk games in the festival, such as wrestling, human chess, Cheo performance, Chau Van singing.
The magnificent spot to contemplate natural landscapes: Loi Am PagodaType: Vietnamese Buddhist Pagoda, Vietnam's Historical Sites
History: over 600 years
Recommended Visiting Time: 2 - 3 hours
Location: Dai Yen, Halong Bay, Quang Ninh
Highlights: Loi Am Festival, Pho Minh tower, Mysterious Chessboard
Loi Am pagoda was constructed in the 15th century. It is about 400 meters above sea level and built in the mountains of the South East. At the peak of the mountain, there is a Mysterious Chessboard, which is about 105 meters far from Loi Am pagoda. This pagoda was demolished many times since the late nineteenth century. However, Pho Minh tower still remains, which is 2.92 meters high and made of red bricks with adhesives including lime, sand, and tar.
The Loi Am Festival is held on 27th January of lunar month. The special ritual of incense offering is performed in a respectful atmosphere. After that, locals and tourists usually pray for a new year of luck and a peaceful life. On the following days, traditional folk games will be celebrated such as wrestling, playing chess, chicken fighting,... to attract many people until the end of 30th January.
The unforgettably magnificent Spring Festival: Ba Vang Pagoda
Type: Vietnamese Buddhist Pagoda
History: near 30 years
Recommended Visiting Time: 1 - 2 hours
Location: Quang Trung Ward, Uong Bi City, Quang Ninh Province
Highlights: Chrysanthemum Festival, Dai Hung Bao Dien, Buddhist culture
Ba Vang Pagoda always attracts tourists with an internal three-door gate which has a Northern pagoda style architecture. In front of the internal three-door gate, there are parallel sentences in the Han character. Passing the gate, tourists will reach Dai Hung Bao Dien with an area of 4,000 square meters, which is regarded as “the largest sanctum on a mountain in Indochina” by the Indochina Records Organization in 2014. The wall of Dai Hung Bao Dien is engraved with various exquisite patterns, especially the large mural painting which depicts Shakyamuni Buddha’s life.
Ba Vang Pagoda
Ba Vang Pagoda is the only place in Quang Ninh Province to organize the Chrysanthemum Festival on the 9th day of the ninth lunar month to admire the chrysanthemum, which is the symbol of Buddhist culture. The festival has many fascinating activities such as offering ceremony, water procession from the old well to the sanctum, chrysanthemum arranging contest, calligraphy demonstration, reciting zen poems, enjoying chrysanthemum tea.
The unforgettably magnificent history: Tran Quoc Nghien Temple
Type: Vietnamese Buddha Temple
History: over 1500 years
Recommended Visiting Time: 1,5 - 2 hours
Location: Tran Quoc Nghien Street, Hong Gai Ward, Halong city, Quang Ninh province
Highlights: Ceremonial Hall, Holy Mother Temple
The temple is located at the foot of Bai Tho Mountain where you can look to the sea. The temple is related to Tran Quoc Nghien who is one of Tran Hung Dao’s sons and a talented general in the battle against the Yuan-Mongol invaders.
The temple has a Back Sanctuary and a three-compartment Ceremonial Hall. The Holy Mother Temple lies to the right of the central temple. Inside the central temple, the middle statue is Tran Quoc Nghien. The other two statues on the right and left sides are the First Lady and Second Lady respectively. The Temple has a set of eight ornamental weapons, along with various worshipping objects.