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Bac Ninh Province

Capital: Bac Ninh City
Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Tay, Nung, Muong
Highlights: But Thap Pagoda, Dinh Bang Communal House, Do Temple, Phat Tich Pagoda

Tourist Attractions

Complex of Ly Dynasty relics

Located in Dinh Bang Ward, Tu Son Town, the complex of Ly Dynasty relics includes Do Temple, Rong (Dragon) Temple, Thien Duc royal tomb, Co Phap Pagoda and Kim Dai Pagoda. From Ha Noi, visitors travel on highway 1A northeast for 15km to arrive in Tu Son Town, and then reach the complex of relics shortly.

EIGHT KINGS OF LY DYNASTY
Ly Thai To (1009-1028)
Ly Thai Tong (1028-1054)
Ly Thanh Tong (1054-1072)
Ly Nhan Tong (1072-1128)
Ly Than Tong (1128-1138)
LyAnh Tong (1138-1175)
Ly Cao Tong (1175-1210)
Ly Hue Tong (1210-1224)

Do Temple also called Co Phap or Ly Bat De (Eight Kings Ly) honours the eight Kings of Ly Dynasty. Regarded as a kingdom (Do) of the deceased kings Ly, the temple has long been called as Do Temple. 
Do Temple was built by King Ly Thai To (Ly Cong Uan) in 1019 and was enlarged by his son Ly Thai Tong in 1030. Since then the temple has been altered several times. The major reconstruction took place in 1602 during the reign of King Le Kinh Tong. In 1952, the temple was destroyed by the war and was restored in 1989 as original temple based on old documents. 
Do Temple covers a total land area of 31,250m2 and it is divided into two parts: inner rampart and outer rampart. The inner rampart expands over 4,320m2, surrounded by 3m-high and 1m-wide brick walls. In the heart of the inner rampart is the main hall, which is comprised of 70m2 Phuong Dinh House, and 220m2 Tien Te House having the altar dedicated to King Ly Thai To. Next is the 180m2 Co Phap Shrine that houses ancestral tablets, sacred thrones and statues of the eight kings. The inner rampart also reserves a place for keeping palanquin and horses... 
The outer rampart consists of a haIf - moon shaped lake with a floating pavilion and houses of Van Chi built in 2002 and Vo Chi built in 2005. Both houses share similarities in architectural layouts - Tien Duong (front) and Hau Cung (back) houses, ceremonial house, storehouse and guesthouse. The lake and floating pavilion is used to serve as a place for the former mandarins to watch water puppet show. Queen Temple (Den Vua Ba) which is dedicated to mothers-queen lies in the outer. Many valuable ancient objects and important historical documents are preserved in Do Temple. In particular, there is an old stele with the writing of Phung Khac Khoan, the winner of a feudal literature contest in 1602. 
Do Temple contains Chieu Doi Do (the royal proclamation to change the capital city) with height of 4.5m and length of 10m. It consists of 214 Chinese characters made from pottery and adapted from Chieu Doi Do of King Ly Thai To. This work is to celebrate the 1000th birthday of Thang Long - Ha Noi. Besides, Dinh Bang Ward has some other relics such as Rong (dragon) Temple in Long Vi Hamlet, dedicated to Ly Chieu Hoang, the last king of the Ly Dynasty; Tho Lang Thien Duc (Thien Duc royal tombs) in Cao Lam Hamlet where Ly Kings' tombs are placed; Co Phap Pagoda, also called Dan Pagoda, nestling amidst Chua Dan Street and relating the legend said that Queen Mother Pham Thi gave birth to Ly Cong Uan in this pagoda on March 8, 974; and Kim Dai Pagoda, also called Luc To Pagoda in Xuan Dai Hamlet, where Ly Cong Uan used to stay to serve as a Buddhist novice.

Dinh Bang Communal House

Dinh Bang Communal House, located in Dinh Bang Village, Tu Son Town, 20km from Ha Noi, is'very famous in the North of the country. Its construction started in 1700 and ended in 1736. The house is a place of worship for three tutelary spirits: Cao Son Dai Vuong, God of land, Thuy Ba Dai Vuong, God of water, and Bach Le Dai Vuong, God of harvest. The main part of the communal house is rectangular, 20m long and 14m wide, and it is divided into seven rooms. It is very imposing Duc to its large roof and its 60 or so ironwood pillars, which range in diameter from 55 to 65cm. The design of the components is very complex and the structure is very sturdy. There is a panel inscribed with Chinese char-acters that is read in Vietnamese as Bat Ma Quan Phi, which means Eight Running Horses. 
To get to Dinh Bang Village from Ha Noi, cross the Red River on the Chuong Duong Bridge and then take National Highway 1Afor nearly 20km. Dinh Bang, which is rich in sites of historical interest, is one of the 20 traditional handicraft villages of Bac Ninh. In Dinh Bang, people are experts in lacquerware. Moreover, almost everyone in the village sings quan ho. People of all ages and of both genders express their feelings through lyrics that bear a deep national character.

Dau Pagoda

Dau Pagoda is located in Thanh Khuong Commune, Thuan Thanh District, 30km from Ha Noi. It was built at the beginning of the 3rdto century, in a region that later became a centre for Buddhism. In Buddha's main sanctu-ary, there is a large statue of the female genie Phap Van, seated on a lotus flower, which is o why the pagoda is also called Phap Van Pagoda.
In the pagoda yard is a famous tower built in the 6th century. This tower was built as a protection against evil winds.

But Thap Pagoda

But Thap Pagoda is located west of But Thap Village, in Dinh To Commune, Thuan Thanh District. But Thap Pagoda is one of the most famous pagodas in Viet Nam. Inside, there are various valuable ancient objects and statues, which are considered to be Vietnamese masterpieces of 17thcentury wood carving. Among them are the Tay Thien Dong Do Lich Dai To statue and the Kuanin statue with one thousand eyes and one thousand arms, made in 1656 and symbolizing the reverence of both religion and beauty.

Phat Tich Pagoda

This pagoda was built between the 7th and the 10th centuries by the mountainside of Phat Tich in Phat Tich Commune, Tien Du District. 
Under the Ly Dynasty, the pagoda underwent a large - scale restoration. In 1057, King Ly Thanh Tong ordered the building of a tower for valuables and he had a gold-inlaid statue cast. The pagoda was heavily damaged in 1947. However, in 1991, it was reconstructed in its original design. There are some ancient relics preserved in the pagoda, such as a statue of Amitabha Buddha on a 1.87m high lotus pedestal carved out of blue stone, a tower garden, and a stone board engraved with images of musicians and dancing girls. 
On September 25,2010, a giant Buddha statue shaped based on the model of Amitabha Buddha statue inaugurated on the peak of the Phat Tich Mountain. The statue, which measures 27m high and weighs 3,000 tonnes, is one of the largest stone statues in Southeast Asia and the first of its kind in Viet Nam.

Dong Ho Painting Village

Located by the Duong River (Thuan Thanh District), Dong Ho is a nice village that specializes in making folk paintings.
Dong Ho's craft of making folk paintings has long come into existence. In the past, the villagers just made paintings before Tet Holiday (Lunar New Year's Day). Nowadays, tourists can buy paintings at any time in the year. Dong Ho villagers do not draw but use wood engravings to print paintings. A fine engraving requires dexterity of the pattern drawer. The painting must be printed on fine do papers. Colours for painting are obtained from such natural materials as half-baked bricks and ashes of some kinds of leaves and roots. In order to make the glittering background for do papers, the artisan burns scallop shells to a kind of powder which is refined and mixed with resin; and then the mixture is pasted on the paper sheet which will be used for painting. 
Dong Ho's paintings have conventional layouts, contents, and colors. For a large part, the paintings reflex wishes for peace, happiness, and prosperity. Some paintings focus on animals such as cows, pigs, dogs, and cats, which are familiar with farming life. Particularly, such topics as "catching coconuts", "mice's wedding", and "jealousy" always attract tourists at home and abroad. Nowadays, Dong Ho villagers also make votive objects for traditional rituals.
Every Tet Festival, a paintings market is held at the Dong Ho Communal House, drawing visitors in quantity. Also at the communal house, a contest of votive objects is held from late 14th to 18th day of the third lunar month. These are two unique cultural events of Dong Ho Village.

Festival

Phat Tich Pagoda Festival

4th-5th day of the 1st lunar month. 
This festival is organized at the Phat Tich Pagoda to honour the excellence of King Ly Thanh Tong. The festivities attract pilgrims who come to worship Buddha, listen to prayers, implore for security and happiness, and at the same time sightsee around the remains and famous landscapes of the Kinh Bac area.

Dong Ho Festival

4th -7th day of the 1st lunar month 
This festival takes place at the Dong Ho Communal House and bears the characteristics of this skilled village famous for its folk paintings. Folk paintings, as well as other native products, are sold at the communal house for the occasion.

Lim Festival

11th -13th day of the 1st iunar month.. The Lim Festival is tied to the Red River Delta tradition consisting of singing quan ho.

Do Temple Festival

15th day of the 3rd lunar month 
The festival is annually organized in 5 days to commemorate achievements of the eight Kings of the Ly Dynasty. The main festive day is on the 16th, which was the day when King Ly Thai To ascended the throne. There is a ceremony for the saint and a solemn procession. Tens of thousands of people participate in the procession that moves from the Kim Dai Pagoda to the temple (around 3 km). 
The festival consists of many folk games such as fighting cocks, releasing pigeons, quan ho singing, and wrestling... 
The procession to the Do Temple deals with both the spiritual significance of the festival and remembers historical characters.

Tourist Information

IDD code: 84 - 241

Transport

Following National Highway 1A, Bac Ninh City is only 30km from Ha Noi.

Bac Ninh Railway Station

Ninh Xa Ward, Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3822 111

Bac Ninh Bus Station

Ninh Xa Ward, Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3821 394 
Bus N0204 from Ha Noi (Luong Yen Bus Station: Nguyen Khoai St.) departs for Bac Ninh (Thuan Thanh Bus Station: 262-268 Pho Moi, Ho Town) every 15 minutes. Time of service: 5am - 8pm.

Tourism Division (dcst)

15 Ly Thai To St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3810 601, Fax: 3822 532

Tour Operator 

Bac Ninh Trade and Tourism Co.
15 Nguyen Van Cu St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3823 619, Fax: 3823 309

Hotels 

Bong Sen Guest House

Tien An Ward, Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3822 261 

Ga Thi Cau Hotel

Zone 6, Thi Cau Ward, Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3825 372

Landmark Hotel

Nguyen Van Cu St., Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3692888, Fax: 3692 889 
86 rooms, US$80-60

Ngoc Kim Guest House

Kha Le St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3829 353

Phoenix Bac Ninh Hotel

Phuc Son, Vu Ninh Ward, Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3871 111, Fax: 3871 555 
86 rooms, US$45-90

Song Cau Guest House

Zone 6, Dap Cau Ward, Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3820 182
6 rooms, US$8-10

Thanh Thanh Hotel

39-41 Ngo Gia Tu Str, Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3821 165
30 rooms, US$11-15

Thanh Tuyen Guest House

Hoa Dinh, Vo Cuong Commune., Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3828 177
15 rooms, US$5-10

Restaurant

Am Thuc Phuong Nam Restaurant

171 Nguyen Gia Thieu St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3810 603

Anh Duong Restaurant

68 Ngo Gia Tu St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3871 266

Hong Kong Restaurant

Pho Moi, Dinh Bang, Tu Son Town 
Tel: 6291 868

Huong Lien Restaurant

190 Nguyen Van Cu St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3828 543

Minh Duc Restaurant

82 Tran Phu St., Tu Son Dist. 
Tel: 3832 389

Ngoc Suong Restaurant

Tran Hung Dao St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3854 567

Post Office

413 Ngo Gia Tu St., Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3821 560

Medical Services

General Hospital

Vu Ninh Commune, Bac Ninh City
Tel: 3821 221

Banks

Agribank

37 Nguyen Dang Dao St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3822 515

BIDV

1 Nguyen Dang Dao St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3821 235

Vietcombank

353 Tran Hung Dao St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3811 848

VietinBank

92 Ngo Gia Tu St., Bac Ninh City 
Tel: 3824 658

 



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