HUNG TEMPLE FESTIVAL

Hung King temple festival

 

Hung temple is located on Nghia Linh Mountain, Hy Lang Commune, Phong Chau District, Phutho Province. Every year, this national festival is held to worship the Hung Kings, who were instrumental in founding the nation.
 
The festival lasts for 3 days from the 9th to the 11th of the 3rd lunar month. The worship service is held on the 10th day and commences with a flower ceremony with the participation of state representatives. Held in Thuong Temple, where the Hung Kings used to worship deities with full rituals, the ceremony consists of a lavish five-fruit feast. Cakes and glutinous rice dumpling are also served to remind people of the Lang Lieu Legend (the 18th Hung King who invented these cakes), and the merit of the Hung Kings who taught people to grow rice.
 

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Next to the stage procession for deities, there are several marches in the procession, such as the elephant march followed by the procession chair. These procession marches are conducted in Tien Cuong, Hy Cuong, Phuong Giao, and Co Tich Villages. The procession marches are followed by a Xoan song performance (a classical type of song) in the Thuong Temple, "Ca Tru" (a kind of classical opera) in Ha temple, and other activities.
 
The Hung Temple Festival not only attracts visitors from all over and allows visitors to participate in special traditional cultural activities, but it is also a sacred trip back in time to the origins of the Vietnamese culture. People usually show their love and pride of their homeland and ancestral land. This religious belief is deeply imbedded in the minds of every Vietnamese citizen, regardless of where they originate.

Starting Dates in Western Calendar 2005 Apr 18, 2006 Apr 07, 2007 Apr 26, 2008 Apr 15

 

CHU DONG TU FESTIVAL

Chu Dong Tu temple festival

 

This festival occurs for three days from the 10th - 12th of the third lunar month in Chu Dong Tu Temple in Du Hoa Village, Chau Giang District, Hungyen province, some 20 km from Hanoi.
 
Saint Chu Dong Tu was one of the "four immortal heroes" at the centre of Vietnamese society. Chu Dong Tu was a cultural hero and the founder of agriculture because he conquered the marsh and developed agriculture and trade.
 
After the opening ceremony, there is a procession to remind people of the legend, life, and work of Saint Chu Dong Tu and his two wives.
 

Starting Dates in Western Calendar 2005 Apr 18, 2006 Apr 07, 2007 Apr 26, 2008 Apr 15.

 

LE MAT SNAKE FESTIVAL

Le Mat snake festivals

 

Le Mat Village belongs to the Viet Hung Commune, Gia Lam District, Hanoi. The Le Mat Village Festival is held annually on the 23rd of the 3rd lunar month. In the early morning on the 23rd day of the 3rd month, representatives of the 13 camps to the west of the Ancient Capital of Thang Long carry 13 trays of food over their heads from the capital to the Le Mat Village.
 
At the beginning of the festival, water and carp processions are staged and brought to the Thanh Communal House. This ritual reminds the present generation of the heroic accomplishments of exploiting and bringing about agriculture to the village. A snake act is then performed in the yard of the communal house. The snake (made of bamboo taped with cloth) symbolizes the water-monster species that has been bitten by the power and will of youth. The music of this act is an octet and the sound of the drummer's double rhythm is haunting. The Le Mat Village Festival provides an opportunity for children in the village, and those who have reclaimed this ancient wasteland in the city, to meet and retell the history of the establishment of the village. The challenge and difficulty that was encountered in the establishment of the village is expressed in the sincere homage of the ancestors of the village.
 

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In addition to the ceremony, the Le Mat people have a special talent for catching snakes. While attending the Le Mat Village Festival, guests are offered a cup of snake wine made from three or five snakes.
 
 

Starting Dates in Western Calendar 2005 May 01, 2006 Apr 20, 2007 May 09, 2008 Apr 28.

 

WHALE FESTIVAL

Whale festival, Quangnam, Vietnam

 

The Whale Festival has been, for centuries, the biggest water festival of the fishermen in Quangnam, Danang province. The worshipping of the whale is not only about paying respect to their God, but also about ensuring prosperity for the villagers. This festival last for two days in the middle of the 3rd lunar month. On this occasion, the whale temple, as well as all the houses and boats, are beautifully decorated. The peace offering is conducted in the first evening at the whale temple by village elders. Offerings, which do not contain sea foods, are given while the oration is read out. The ceremony is held to respect the Whale God and to pray for the safety and prosperity of the village.
 
At dawn the following day, there will be a procession of boats on the sea in a set formation. This procession displays the sincerity of fishermen to their Whale God. By midnight, the official ceremony is conducted as school children offer incense and the orchestra plays a classical opera. All the fishing boats and villagers, no matter where they are, will return to take part in the Whale Festival.
 
 

Starting Dates in Western Calendar 2005 Apr 18, 2006 Apr 07, 2007 Apr 26, 2008 Apr 15.

 

ELEPHANT RACE FESTIVAL

elephant racing festival

 

This festival is held in the spring, around the 3rd month of the lunar calendar. It is usually held in Don Village or in forests near the Sevepoi River (Daclak). The race track is on even ground where there are only has a few big trees. The width of the track is large enough for 10 elephants to stand in a line at the same time and the length of the track runs 1-2 km.
 
With the signal of the horn (a wind instrument), the mahouts command their elephants to go to the starting line. When the command to start the race is released, all of the elephants rush ahead, excited by the sound of the drums, gongs, and cheering from the viewers. At the end of the race, the winning elephants lift their trunks above their heads to wave to the viewers. They walk deliberately flapping their ears gently, gazing through half-closed eyes to receive sugarcane from their viewers.
 
The elephant race is the biggest festival in the middle highland. It bears the martial spirit of the M'nong ethnic group, who are very famous for their bravery and skill in hunting wild elephants.

Vietnam Festivals in April, HUNG TEMPLE FESTIVAL, CHU DONG TU FESTIVAL, LE MAT SNAKE FESTIVAL

See Also

Festivals in November & December
Festival in January & February