Must-Visit Holiday Destination: Hung King Temple in Can Tho City
Vietnamese nation’s history goes back thousands of years. Lac Long Quan, the Dragon Lord of Lac, is considered the father of all Vietnamese people, anh Au Co, the fairy goddess, the Mother. One of the couple's children became King Hung and founded Van Lang, the First Nation in Vietnamese history. Having ruled Vietnam for 18 generations, the hung kings are worshipped at a complex of temples.
Hence, Vietnamese people celebrate the commemoration day of the Hung Kings, the nation's mythical founders, on the 10th of the third lunar month every year. Hung King worshiping ritual has been recognized by UNESCO as an intangible cultural heritage of humanity.
|Hung King Temple in Can Tho city. Photo: Thanh Nien Online|
In Can Tho City, Hung King Temple with an area of nearly 4 hectares and a total budget of VND 129.5 billion was opened for visit in April 6.
|Photo: Bao Can Tho|
The main features of the temple include: the main temple, main gate, stele house, ritual house, executive house, courtyard.
The main temple is surrounded by a round lake on a square base, symbolizing the traditional philosophy of "round heaven and square earth."
There are 18 bows surrounding the lakes, symbolizing the 18 Hung Kings. Each bow is decorated simulated from motifs on Dong Son bronze drums.
|Inside the lake, there are 54 stone pillars representing the community of 54 ethnic groups. Photo: Bao Can Tho|
Inside the lake, there are 54 stone pillars representing the community of 54 ethnic groups, and also showing the signature feature of the Mekong Delta culture.
|Worshiping space in the Main Temple. Photo: Bao Can Tho|
When coming inside, The center of the worship space is for worshiping Quoc To Hung Vuong, the two sides are for worshiping Father Lac Long Quan and Mother Au Co.
In addition, the worship space displays ceremonial items like old weapons, bronze drums, bells, halberds, etc., which were provided by the People's Committee of Phu Tho province.
|Big mural on both sides of the worshipping space tells the legend of Vietnam's origin. Photo: Bao Can Tho|
According to the legend of Vietnam's origin, Lac Long Quan and Au Co laid a sack of 100 eggs from which 100 children hatched. However, despite their love for each other, The Mother had always desired to be in the mountains again and Lac Long Quan, too, yearned for the sea where the length of days are measured by seasons.
They separated, each taking 50 children. Âu Cơ settled in the Vietnamese snow covered mountains where she raised fifty young, intelligent, strong leaders, later known as the Hung Vuong (Hung King). The most illustrious of the sons became the first Hùng king who ruled Van Lang.
According to the Chung cake - Day cake legend, ey the 6th generation, Hung king held a competition to select as his successor. Whoever had the best offering for ancestral worship instead of following the usual custom of seating the throne to his oldest son. His youngest son Lang Lieuu, who used sticky rice to make a white round cake called Day and green square cake called Chung to symbolize the Heaven and the Earth, won the competition and became the 7th Hung King.
The realm of all the descendants of Dragon and Fairy Âu Cơ who became the Vietnamese people.
|The Main Gate. Photo: Bao Can Tho|
On the evening of April 6, at inauguration ceremony of the Hung King Temple (located in area 7, Binh Thuy Ward, Binh Thuy District), the host, Can Tho City People's Committee welcomed President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and the Standing Vice Chairman of the National Assembly Tran Thanh Man.
|After the inauguration ceremony, the temple will officially open to welcome visitors from April 7. Photo: Dan Toc va Phat Trien|
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