Festivals are an essential part in the life of Vietnamese people. Attending festivals and visiting pagodas to pray for good luck after Tet holiday have become traditions of Vietnamese people. Festivals reflect a rich and diverse Vietnamese culture. The North of Vietnam is home to a huge number of traditional festivals scattering throughout the region; however, most of major festivals are held in spring.
Bai Dinh Pagoda Festival
Time: 1st to 3rd lunar month
Location: Sinh Duoc village, Gia Sinh commune, Gia Vien District, Ninh Binh Province
Purpose: express various beliefs—Buddhism, Confucianism, worship the Buddha and Gods, honor national heroes such as Quang Trung, Dinh Bo Linh.
Entertaining activities: playing folk games, sightseeing, enjoying traditional music performances
Annually, Bai Dinh pagoda festival takes place officially on the 6th day of Lunar first month, lasts till the end of the third lunar month helping tourists have time to immerse in festive atmosphere.
Take a trip to Bai Dinh pagoda festival on the occasion of New Year, visitors have a chance to gain a deeper insight into special atmosphere of the ceremony with a series of exciting cultural activities such as wrestling, tug of war; marvel at magnificent scenes of mountains and caves, dip into Vietnamese culture.
During the festival, visitors can take part in ceremonies including worshiping Buddha through incense offering, commemorating Saint Nguyen Minh Khong or folk games, do sightseeing a number of caves, enjoy special traditional performances such as Cheo singing.
Perfume Pagoda Festival
Time: 1st to 3rd month
Location: My Duc district, Hanoi, 69km south of Hanoi center
Purpose: worship Buddhism, pilgrimage
Ceremonies: incense offering procession, Zen ceremony
Entertaining activities: boat cruising, mountain climbing, sightseeing
Perfume Pagoda complex, one of Buddhism centers in Vietnam, includes several Buddhist pagodas and temples on Huong Tich lime-stone Mountain. Huong Pagoda Festival plays an important role in the spiritual life of Vietnamese people. The festival’s official opening day is on the 6th day of the first Lunar month and lasts three months annually.
Each year, thousands pilgrims across the country and foreign tourists as well head to Huong Pagoda (Perfume Pagoda) at the time of festival. They flock to the pagoda to pray for themselves and their family. Also, they wish to soak up the festive atmosphere of the pagoda festival, get a first-hand experience of sampan boat on Yen Stream from Duc Pier.
During the ceremony, there are two monks performing traditional dances. Pilgrims will take part in ceremonial rituals including incense offering procession and Zen ceremony.
Yen Tu Pagoda Festival
Time: on the 10th day of the first lunar month to 15th day of the third lunar month Location: Yen Tu Mountain, Yen Cong Commune, Uong Bi district, Quang Ninh Province
Purpose: worship Buddhism, pilgrimage
Yen Tu is one of the largest pagodas in northern Vietnam. Yen Tu pagoda festival is held annually from the 10th day of the first lunar month and will last three months. Each year thousands of pilgrims to Yen Tu pray for good luck, get rid of all sorrows and sadness, show their belief and aspiration and make a pilgrimage to the largest center of Buddhism in Vietnam.
Also, many people flock to Yen Tu Pagoda for sightseeing, immerse in the pure atmosphere of a mountain region, feast their eyes on beauty landscapes and delve into Vietnamese history. Many cultural and historical values are carefully preserved in Yen Tu, where is also home to a rare ecosystem in Vietnam.
The Yen Tu pagoda complex concludes 11 pagodas and hundreds of shrines and towers. On the way to the Dong pagoda (1,068m above the sea), tourists can marvel at a series of pagodas, towers and forests. At the top, you seem to be lost in nature somewhere between the sky and the earth.