As a famous religious site in An Giang, Ba Chua Xu Temple is especially popular during festivals in Vietnam. During these occasions, the temple becomes a bustling hub, its serene architecture and atmosphere adding to its charm. The combination of religious significance, architectural beauty, and cultural vibrancy also makes Ba Chua Xu Temple a captivating tourist attraction.
1. Where is Ba Chua Xu Temple? Who is worshiped there?
Ba Chua Xu Temple is situated in Chau Doc City, An Giang Province, a popular tourist city in the upper reaches of the Mekong Delta. This temple is dedicated to Ba Chua Xu, a deity who is believed to possess great powers, protecting the locals from harm while bringing them luck and prosperity.
According to legend, about 200 years ago, the locals discovered a statue of Ba Chua Xu on the top of Sam Mountain and wanted to bring it down. While strong young men could not do the deed, only nine maidens could. When the statue was carried to the foot of the mountain, it suddenly became heavy again, as if to say it wanted to be placed there. The locals decided to set it here and build Ba Chua Xu Temple as a place of worship.
There is another legend where the Siamese army attacked the country and the locals had to flee to Sam Mountain to take refuge. When the Siamese made chase to the top of the mountain, they found the statue of Ba Chua Xu and tried to take it, but the statue was too heavy for them to lift. In frustration, they struck the statue and broke its left arm, bringing forth divine punishment immediately. After that, the locals brought the statue to the foot of the mountain and set up a temple to worship the deity.
A different legend has it that Ba Chua Xu Temple was built by Mr. Thoai Ngoc Hau as a token of thanks to Ms. Chau Thi Te, who prayed to the Queen of the Land to help him defeat foreign invaders at the border. Regardless of the legend, one thing is clear: Ba Chua Xu is a very important figure to the people in An Giang.
2. How to get to Ba Chua Xu Chau Doc?
Ba Chua Xu Temple is conveniently located at the heart of the province, so visitors can easily reach the temple.
There are many buses that you can take to get to the temple. From Ho Chi Minh City, you can take a bus through Trung Luong - My Thuan Highway to get to Chau Doc. It takes over 5 hours to cover the total distance between the two cities.
You can also rent a motorbike and travel on your own. Although potentially more time-consuming, you can travel at your own pace, stopping whenever and wherever you want. A motorbike trip is great for those traveling solo or as a couple.
3. Highlights of Ba Chua Xu Temple Vietnam
3.1. Impressive architecture
Ba Chua Xu Temple is shaped like a lotus with a three-storey root. Originally, the temple had a simple appearance with just bamboo leaves. Now, it stands majestically with colored bricks and tiles. The temple’s highlight is the main hall, which has two sections.
- The inner section is where the statue of Ba Chua Xu is, seated on a high pedestal. To the sides of this section are two altars called the Altar of Chu (Uncle) and Altar of Co (Aunt).
- The outer section is the Altar of Council, consisting of the Altar of Tien Sage on the left and the Altar of Hau Sage on the right.
With elaborate carvings and vibrant colors all over, it is entirely possible to visit Ba Chua Xu Temple solely for its aesthetics.
3.2. Vibrant festivals
Every year, around the fourth lunar month, a large festival is held to celebrate Ba Chua Xu. It includes many interesting ceremonies and activities, like the ceremony to carry the statue of Ba Chua Xu, the ceremony to bathe her, the ceremony to pray to Lord Thoai Ngoc Hau, the ceremony to give offerings, etc. In addition, there are many folk games and cultural performances of the Kinh, Cham, Hoa, and Khmer people. A large number of locals and tourists come to celebrate the festival each year.
3.3. Scenic cable car rides
There is a cable car system that stretches 900 meters over Sam Mountain. On it, you will be able to see not only Ba Chua Xu Temple but also other attractions that An Giang is famous for. You can take in panoramic views of lush green rice fields and winding waterways, too.
Ascending Sam Mountain on a cable car will be a mesmerizing experience filled with awe-inspiring scenery. A one-way ticket costs only 35,000 VND for kids and 75,000 VND for adults. If you are under 1.2 meters tall or over 70 years old, you can embark on this wonderful ride for free.
4. Extra tips for your spiritual excursion to Ba Chua Xu Temple
- Avoid weekdays if you prefer a quiet and crowd-free visit.
- Wear appropriate clothes, avoid showing too much skin.
- Wear sunscreen and consider bringing a jacket along to protect yourself from UV rays.
- Do not litter, step onto the grass, or touch the items without permission.
- Bring water and snacks to stay hydrated and full.
In addition to Ba Chua Xu Temple, An Giang has many other religious sites, including Hang Pagoda, Kim Tien Pagoda, Tay An Pagoda, Huynh Dao Pagoda, Lau Pagoda, Pa Ta Pagoda, etc. Besides An Giang, there are many other destinations in the region worth discovering, such as Can Tho, Ben Tre, Bac Lieu, Tra Vinh, and Kien Giang.
For further exploration of Vietnam’s charm, you can also add Hanoi, Phu Quoc, Nha Trang, Hoi An, and Ha Long to your itinerary. These destinations offer a diverse range of experiences that will immerse you in the country’s beauty and culture. In these destinations, you can stay at the hotels and resorts of Vinpearl.
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Ba Chua Xu Temple is a must-visit for good reasons. Visitors coming here can marvel at the impressive architecture and immerse themselves in the region’s natural beauty and cultural richness. Make sure to add this attraction to your travel itinerary in An Giang and the southwestern region.