OTAVN – A trip to the southwest has way more than drop-ins to orchards and the delta lifestyle of inhabitants along the Mekong, but also a solemn pilgrimage to the most sacred places of worship in the Southwest.
Holy lady temple, An Giang
Holy lady temple is perched at the foot of Sam mountain in Nui Sam ward, Chau Doc city, An Giang. The holy lady festival officially takes place between Lunar April 24th and 27th on an annual basis, of which the main festival occurs on the 25th day. Holy lady festival was registered by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of National Significance in 2015.
Xiem Can pagoda, Bac Lieu
Xiem Can pagoda is nested in Hiep Thanh commune, around 7km from the downtown of Bac Lieu city. The route to Xiem Can pagoda also connects other renowned places of interests, including Bac Lieu bird garden and the Dandy Mansion of Bac Lieu, to enable a more rewarding trip here. The religious complex of Xiem Can includes various developments facing east, which were all assigned to Hinayana Buddhism. Not just a famed pagoda with outstanding religious and architectural values, Xiem Can pagoda also plays a prominent role in shaping a plethora of cultural essences in the religious life of the Khmer community here. Bac Lieu in festive season, notably that of Ok Om Bok, Chol Chnam Thmay or Don Ta, is draped in the flamboyant decorations of Xiem Can pagoda. The atmosphere is equally vibrant, with songs and dances to no ends.
Rach Giong pagoda, Ca Mau
The Khmer pagoda of Rach Giong is located in Duong Dao hamlet, Ho Thi Ky commune, Thoi Binh district, Ca Mau, around 17km North of the center of Ca Mau city. The pagoda was commenced around 1788. The pagoda spans nearly 3ha and is crowded with countless golden oak trế. The main hall of Rach Giong pagoda is among the finest out of Khmer places of worship in Ca Mau.
Phuoc Hau titular temple, Vinh Long
Phuoc Hau titular temple is situated in Dong Hau hamlet, Ngai Tu commune, Tam Binh district, Vinh Long. The façade of the temple is Hau river, a key waterway of Viet Nam, and in the back lies National Highway 54 that connects the three provinces of Vinh Long, Can Tho and Tra Vinh. Just several hundreds of meters of the titular temple are Tra On town. Through various restorations and renovations, Phuoc Hau titular temple still largely preserves its rustic, authentic and heartwarming architecture.
Pothi Somron pagoda, Can Tho
Nested in Chau Van Liem ward, O Mon district, Can Tho city, Pothi Somron pagoda by O Moi river is reputedly the oldest Khmer Buddhist pagoda of Can Tho. The pagoda was commenced in 1735. One of the most magnificent developments of the pagoda is the ancient stupa garden, dotted with towering stupas that date back centuries ago. A drop-in to the pagoda is a time machine into a little yard lushly forested by shady perennial trees. The charm of this pagoda is further accentuated by the sala, the Saraca Indica Tree, reportedly brought from India, which always yield elegant blossoms and soothing scent.
Cave pagoda, An Giang
Cave pagoda is around 125km from the downtown of Can Tho city, as part of the four sites collectively registered as the Historical Site of National Significance on Sam mountain, Chau Doc city, An Giang. Cave pagoda is reputed for its solemn charm and ethereal divinity. The pagoda was deep in the famously divine mountain of Sam in Chau Doc city. The trail to the pagoda includes hundreds of stars that are essentially piled and polished stones.
(Source: Vietnam Today 2021)
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