Top 14 Best Temples in Vietnam to Visit

Most Popular Vietnam temples from North to South

Rachel Tran
Rachel Tran | Published: October 18, 2019

If you want to go to a Buddhist temple to pray for peace or find a peaceful place to calm the mind and soul, don’t miss these following best temples in Vietnam. Vietnam is a gathering place for spiritual tourism with many beautiful and sacred temples. Let’s discover more information about these temples in Vietnam.

1. Tran Quoc Pagoda, Hanoi

1. Tran Quoc Pagoda, Hanoi

Considered one of the best temples in Vietnam, Tran Quoc Pagoda with 1500 years of history is the first temple built under King Ly Nam De (541 - 547) on the banks of the Hong River. When completed, the pagoda was named Khai Quoc pagoda. After many renaming and relocation, by the end of the 17th century, the pagoda was named as Tran Quoc by King Tran Hy Tong and was located on a single island east of West Lake, in present-day Tay Ho district.
The first unique feature of Tran Quoc Pagoda is the entrance of the pagoda. There is a softly curved path leading to the temple. Going through the temple gate, visitors only need to follow the only red-tiled road to get to the inner structures including the main hall in the middle.
The corridor continues to be extended by the incense burner and the upper palace, behind it was the bell tower. The highlight of Tran Quoc pagoda is the unique tomb tower of pagoda behind the pagoda with many ancient towers which was built in the 18th century. Of which, the most prominent thing is probably the tower of a 11-floor lotus flower tower which is 15m high. It was built in 1998. Each tower’s floor has 6 doorcells. In each cell, there is an Amitabha Buddha statue made of precious stone. On the top of the tower there is Cuu Pham Lien Hoa stone statue.Tran Quoc pagoda Hanoi

Location: Thanh Nien, Yen Phu, Tay Ho, Hanoi
Opening hours: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
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2. Cao Dai Temple, Tay Ninh

2. Cao Dai Temple, Tay Ninh

The construction of The Cao Dai Temple finished in 1955. Caodaists’s belief is all religions are the same and all are seeking to promote tolerance throughout the world. The Lord Buddha, Muhammad and Confucius, Jesus Christ, and Joan of Arc and Julius Cesar are all worshiped at this temple.
Watching Caodiasts pray is one of the main activities when visiting this temple. They must dress in long flowing robes of white for lay followers, or wear in yellow, blue or red for priests. When worship is held, women are seated on the left, men on the right and all devotees seated in orderly rows. The construction is a combination of Oriental, Neo-Gothic, and Baroque design. It is ornately decorated including seven-headed cobras, dragon wrapped pillars, and ceilings of sky blue.

Location: Hoa Thanh Town, Hoa Thanh District, Tay Ninh.
Opening hours: 7 a.m. – 6 p.m.
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3. Bai Dinh Pagoda, Ninh Binh

3. Bai Dinh Pagoda, Ninh Binh

What makes Bai Dinh Pagoda one of the best temples in Vietnam is a lot of records as the largest bronze Buddha statue in Southeast Asia, the largest bronze bell in Southeast Asia, etc. For nearly 1,000 years, the temple is still there as a testament to the persistent vitality of Buddhism in the spiritual life of Vietnamese people. Ancient Bai Dinh pagoda is also one of the national historical and cultural relics in the ancient capital, with spiritual and scenic value.
Temple architecture featured with large cubes, majestic imprints of Vietnam, are used by many major materials locally as Ninh Binh green stone, Tu Thiet wood, Bat Trang glazed tiles, etc. Main attractions of Bai Dinh pagoda are Tam Quan gate, bell tower, the Quan Am, Phap Chu, Tam The palaces. To get to an attraction, you have to go through quite a long way, mostly the stairs. This is a way to show our patience and the desire to set foot in the pure land of humans.

Location: Gia Sinh Commune, Gia Vien, Ninh Binh
Opening hours: 7 a.m. - 6 p.m.
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4. Temple of Literature, Hanoi

4. Temple of Literature, Hanoi

Temple of Literature was built to teach and worship Confucius and the talented Confucian scholars. This site was built in 1070 by King Ly Thanh Tong. This is a work built to promote the spirit of studiousness of the people as well as finding talents to serve the country. After being built, education here began in 1076. It is considered as one of the most famous and best temples in Vietnam. 
Temple of Literature is located to the South of Thang Long Imperial Citadel, in an area of ​​55,027m 2. It is divided into 5 separate areas. The overall architecture of Temple of Literature from the entrance includes the gate of Temple of Literature, Dai Trung Mon, Khue Van Cac, Dai Thanh, and Thai Hoc courtyard.
The first area is from the main gate of the Temple of Literature to the gate of Dai Trung Mon. There are 2 small doors on the left and right of Dai Trung Mon, the left gate is called Thanh Duc gate, the right is called Dat Tai door.
The second area is from Dai Trung Mon to Khue Van Cac - an architectural work representing Vietnamese literature and education.  Khue Van Cac was built in 1805 with wooden architecture taking the image of a shining Khue star.
The third area consists of a large Thien Quang square well, creating a harmonious aquatic space for the overall relics of Temple of Literature and two rows of steles stating the names of the talented scholars. Each row has 41 steles placed on a tortoise symbolizing immortal immortality. 82 stone steles are the most valuable artifact that symbolizes the fondness of Vietnamese people through 82 examinations.

Location: No 58, Van Mieu street, Dong Da district, Ha Noi. 
Opening hours:
- Summer (from 15/4 to 15/10): 7:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.
- Winter season (remaining time): 8:00 am - 5:00 p.m.
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5. Thien Mu Pagoda, Hue

5. Thien Mu Pagoda, Hue

Another one of the best temples in Vienam is Thien Mu Pagoda, which was built in 1601 during the reign of King Nguyen Hoang. Despite experiencing the events of history, but so far Thien Mu has always been the oldest temple in the land of the capital city with works that retain the beauty from the beginning.
A symbol associated with Thien Mu Pagoda's image is Phuoc Duyen. The tower is 21m high tower, including seven floors. It was built in front of the temple. Each floor has Buddha statues. Inside, there is a spiral staircase leading to the top floor, where there used to be a golden Buddha image.
In addition to Phuoc Nguyen tower, Thien Mu pagoda also has architectural works such as Dai Hung Palace, Ksitigarbha Palace, Quan Am Palace, etc together with stelae and bronze bells. Besides, the temple is also home to many valuable artifacts in history and art. The statues of Dharma protectors, the Ten Kings statue, Buddha Maitreya statue, Tam The Buddha statue or the galleries, the couplets here all mark the golden history periods of Thien Mu Pagoda. Located on the banks of the poetic Huong River, Thien Mu Pagoda with ancient architecture has contributed to the adornment of the natural picture, which is more charming, solemn and sacred.

Location: Huong Hoa, Hue City, Huong Hoa Hue City Thua Thien Hue
Opening hours: 8 am - 6 pm
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6. Van Thuy Tu Temple, Binh Thuan province

6. Van Thuy Tu Temple, Binh Thuan province

When listing one of the best temples in Vietnam, we cannot miss Van Thuy Tu Temple. It was established by fishermen Thuy Tu in 1762 to worship him (whale).
In terms of architectural value, Dinh Van Thuy Tu used the "Tu Tru" architecture. All the rafters, pillars, compartments are derived from the top of the four pillars; Wood structure systems are selected from precious woods, the details are assembled elaborately and meticulously carved. Up to now, compared to dozens of Van temples worshiping Hai Than along the coast of Binh Thuan, Dinh Van Thuy Tu has ancient architecture still in its original state, preserving a lot of Han-Nom cultural heritage related to the fishery.

Location: Ngu Ong Street, Duc Thang ward, Phan Thiet city, Binh Thuan province
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm
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7. Jade Emperor Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh City

7. Jade Emperor Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh City

The temple was originally the Jade Emperor's temple built by a man named Luu Minh (from Guangdong, China) in the early 20th century in the style of Chinese architecture. In 1984, the Jade Emperor Pagoda was renamed, Phuoc Hai. However, people still used to call it Jade Emperor.
Jade Emperor Pagoda is an ancient temple, made in the style of a Chinese temple with a decorative motif. The pagoda is built with bricks and roofs covered with yin and yang tiles, decorated with roof edges, and the corners are covered with colorful ceramic statues. Inside the temple are three palaces. The main palace worships the Jade Emperor, Huyen Thien Bac De with the natural soldiers and generals.

Location: 73 Mai Thi Luu Street, Da Kao, District 1, Ho Chi Minh
Opening hours: 7 am - 6 pm
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8. Perfume Pagoda, Hanoi

8. Perfume Pagoda, Hanoi

The pagoda was built on a large scale around the end of the 17th century, then destroyed in the anti-French resistance war in 1947, then rebuilt in 1988 by Thuong Thich Vien Thanh. Huong Pagoda is not only famous in Vietnam, but also known as one of the best temples in Southern Asia. 
Huong Pagoda - Hanoi is a tourist attraction attracting tourists from everywhere. Trinh Temple, Huong Huong Tich Temple, Cua Vong Temple, Oan Prize Pagoda, Tien Son Cave are located in the Huong pagoda population which are places to visit not to be missed. Besides, the Huong Pagoda Festival in early Spring brings special spiritual values ​​in Vietnamese culture. The 6th of January is the opening day. The festival usually lasts until the third week of the third lunar month. On the occasion of the festival, millions of Buddhists and tourists from all over the 4 provinces are very excited to the Huong Pagoda Festival.

Location: Huong Son, My Duc, Hanoi  
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm
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9. Giac Lam Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh City

9. Giac Lam Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh City

The pagoda was built by layman Ly Thuy Long in the spring of 1744 during the reign of Lord Nguyen Phuc Khoat. Initially, the pagoda was named Son Can (painted mountain, cang is a shallow mound), later known as Cam Son because the pagoda was located on Cam Son mound.
Giac Lam Pagoda now has a Tam-shaped architecture consisting of three rows of interconnected houses: the main hall, the lecture hall and the street (also called Ong Giam's house). Giac Lam Palace Hall with the traditional style of a traditional folk house with two wings, four main columns or four pillars. Inside the palace is quite wide and deep and there are 56 big pillars carved elaborately.

Location: 565 Lac Long Quan, Ward 10, Tan Binh, Ho Chi Minh  
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm  
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10. One Pillar Pagoda, Hanoi

10. One Pillar Pagoda, Hanoi

The One Pillar Pagoda is a must-visit destination for every visitor. According to Vietnam history, it is one of the best temples in Vietnam which was built by King Ly Thai Tong in the winter of 1049.
The architecture of the unique One Pillar Pagoda is "unique". The temple is shaped like a lotus flower blooming on the water - a flower symbolizing the purity and nobility of Buddhism. Therefore, people still call it as Lien Hoa Dai. The entire temple space is located on a stone pillar under Linh Chieu Lake. The pillar consists of 2 stone blocks but is cleverly mounted as one to create a unique architecture for the temple. The pagoda is made of many kinds of precious wood. Temple’s roof tiles were cleverly designed and curved shape with extremely delicate patterns. In temple architecture from ancient times to the present, dragons are an indispensable symbol. This is a symbol of the divine authority and bold human values, reflecting the desire and intellect of man.
To go upwards to the temple, you will have to step through a small step of 13 steps made of bricks. On the stairs, there are stone steles that briefly introduce the history of the temple.
Inside the temple, there is a statue of Quan Am Buddha with sophisticated decoration. The Buddha statue is designed to mimic the dream of the King Ly Thai Tong, which was Quan Am Buddha sitting on a shining lotus flower. Around the temple, it is Linh Chieu lake surrounded by low brick walls.
In addition to the unique architectural features, One Pillar Pagoda is also the pinnacle of Eastern philosophy. Many researchers believe that the temple space is built in harmony between the philosophy of yin and yang. The pagoda was built in a square shape to symbolize the yin. Meanwhile, the pillar supporting the temple is a circle of yang symbols. That is the harmony of heaven and earth, birth-death, yin - yang.

Location: One Pillar Pagoda, Doi Can, Ba Dinh, Hanoi
Opening hours: 7 am - 6 pm
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11. Keo Pagoda, Thai Binh Province

11. Keo Pagoda, Thai Binh Province

According to research from the Management Board of Thai Binh Province Relics, this pagoda has an ancient origin from the temple named Nghiem Quang Tu, built on Keo village land in 1061 years of King Ly Thanh Tong. Spending nearly 400 years of existence, through many embellishments, the pagoda still retains the unique ancient architecture of the Vietnamese temple. Every year, Keo Temple Festival takes place on January 4.
The main architectural works of the pagoda population include Tam Ngoai Quan, Tam Quan Noi, Buddha Pagoda, Ong Ho pagoda, Ong Muong, Tam Bao, Gia Roi, Thieu Huong, Phu Quoc, Thuong Dien, and finally Gac Chuong. Famous architecture of Keo Pagoda is the bell tower, which is a unique wooden artwork, typical for the ancient architecture of Vietnam in the Le Dynasty. It was built on a square brick floor, 11m high, with 3 floors, and connected by painted mountains.

Location: Duy Nhat commune, Vu Thu district, Thai Binh province, Vietnam
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm 
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12. Quan Cong Temple, Quang Nam Province

12. Quan Cong Temple, Quang Nam Province

Quan Cong Temple is also known as Ong Pagoda. It was built by the Minh Huong people living in Hoi An and Vietnamese people in the mid-17th century.
The architecture of the Guan Gong Temple consists of four buildings, a vestibule, two left-wing areas, and a large hall. Four buildings were built in the form of an aperture to avoid overlapping structure. Its roof tiles are uniquely decorated with elaborate dragon motifs.
The main hall houses the statue of Quan Cong and the other two statues, which are the statue of Chau Thuong, who is the brave and loyal servant of Quan Cong and the statue of Quan Binh Nghia Tu; together with 2 horses which has the same height as the real horse. These statues are exquisitely made to show the virtuosity of the artisans of the past.

Location: 24 Tran Phu, Cam Chau, Hoi An, Quang Nam  
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm
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13. Linh Ung Temple, Da Nang

13. Linh Ung Temple, Da Nang

Linh Ung Pagoda built from 07/2014 with an area up to 20 hectares and is situated at an altitude of 693m above the sea. This temple is in the middle of Son Tra Mountain, shaped like a turtle, standing here you will easily admire the beauty of the clear blue sea and enjoy the fresh air of the sea breeze. Linh Ung Tu is a complex with many constructions including the ancestor house, the monastery, and the library, the main hall, the lecture hall.
Linh Ung Pagoda is built in a modern style combined with the inherent tradition of temples in Vietnam. The main hall of Linh Ung Pagoda is built with a curved tile roof. The solid pillars of the main hall are also surrounded by intricate carvings of dragons. A whole group of construction such as the main hall, the ancestral house, the amphitheater, etc were built on a large scale and majestic in Linh Ung Pagoda.

Location: Son Beach on Son Tra Peninsula, Son Tra District, Da Nang
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm
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14. Thien Hau Temple, Ho Chi Minh City

14. Thien Hau Temple, Ho Chi Minh City

The pagoda was built in 1760 and was recognized as a national architectural and artistic vestige in 1993. Although it has 256 years of existence, Thien Hau pagoda is always one of the best temples in Vietnam because it still retains its unique architecture after a lot of restorations. 
Thien Hau pagoda is one of the oldest temples in Saigon, bearing the style of ancient Chinese pagodas, from patterns, architecture to construction materials. The temple has hundreds of antiques dating from the late 18th century to the early 20th century, including wooden statues, stone statues, stelae, copper censer, reliefs, etc meticulously crafted and refined. International. Among the rows of temples, there is a space called the Thien Tinh which helps to collect light, air, and smoke. According to those who take care of the temple, Thien Hau's temple welcomes many visitors every day.

Location: 710 Nguyen Trai, Ward 11, District 5, Ho Chi Minh  
Opening hours: 8 am - 4 pm
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Each temple in Vietnam has a unique appearance, associated with different legends. However, they are the same sacred place and help people to have more faith in life. When visiting Vietnam, do not forget to go to one of the best temples in Vietnam.

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