Can Tho is a famous worth-visit destination of Vietnam’s tourism. As a unique city full of charms, Can Tho always gives visitors great feelings. Nam Nha Pagoda is one of the most popular destinations of Can Tho that you cannot miss on your trip to this beautiful land. It is one of the magnificent ancient temples that is famous for its architecture as well as decorative style. Nam Nha Pagoda is also one of the places with deep historical and cultural value to Can Tho and to Vietnam.
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Explore Nam Nha Pagoda – A Magnificent Historical Pagoda of Can Tho
1. Location of Nam Nha Pagoda and Opening Time
Address: 612 Cach Mang Thang Tam Street, An Thoi Ward, Binh Thuy District, Can Tho City.
Nam Nha Pagoda opens from 7.30 am to 5 pm. The ticket is free and you don’t have to pay any for the entrance. Nam Nha Pagoda is only 6km from the centre of Can Tho city. Just start at Le Loi Street, turn left to Tran Phu Street and go straight to the Tran Phu roundabout to Cach Mang Thang Tam Street (CMT8). In the roundabout, you continue to turn right to Cach Mang Thang Tam Street (CMT8) and go another 4km, you will arrive at Nam Nha Pagoda.
2. History of Nam Nha Pagoda
From the first time, the pagoda was named Nam Nhã Đường and was a northern pharmacy. It was built and opened by Nguyen Giac Nguyen who is a student of Bui Huu Nghia – a famous poet and pharmacist in the Nguyen dynasty. Then Mr Nguyen Giac Nguyen became a Buddhist monk and changed the name to Minh Su Pagoda. Later the pagoda’s name changed to Nam Nha Pagoda as nowadays.
The pagoda was built in 1895. Since 1905, because of influence from the Dong Du Movement, the patriotic tradition of the monks and Buddhists was started. The pagoda became a headquarters for supporting students to study and spread patriotic poetry.
During the difficult times of the revolution, Special Commissioner Hau Giang and the Southern Committee of the South chose this place as a place to contact revolutionary organizations in the whole region. On January 25, 1991, the pagoda Nam Nha Duong Can Tho was recognized as a revolutionary historical monument.
3. Nam Nha Pagoda Architecture
The temple is located on a spacious campus, surrounded by a large garden, and stretched to the banks of the Binh Thuy River. In the garden, there are many beautiful conifers, rosewoods and other great old trees. Nam Nha pagoda gate is made of bricks and tiles. The two sides of the column have a reciprocal sentence, which means welcoming people, encouraging them to improve. However, the further meaning is to invite people who are like-patriotic. The pagoda yard is tiled, and there is an amazing huge rockery over 2m height that is placed in a water tank built of bricks in the middle of the yard.
The main hall of the pagoda is a substantial brick house, including 5 sections, a yin-yang tile roof, and a picture of a dragon. The main face was built in the style of Asian architecture at the beginning of the 20th century. The new style is with many differences from the traditional pagoda in the South at that time.
Inside the main hall of Nam Nha Pagoda, the central space is decorated very solemnly. There is the altar of the three philosophy of the three religions: Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. It means no matter in what religion, all religions teach people to live a good life, be better, and lead towards goodness as well as beauty.
Behind the main hall is a long corridor, with 2 rooms for the reception. The right and the left of the pagoda are two rows of tiled houses, namely Can Dao Duong (Dong Lang building) for men and Khon Dao Duong (Tay Lang building) for women, connected to the kitchen. Behind the temple is a lush, beautiful orchard.
Every year, the pagoda has big festivals such as the full moon worship in January, the full moon in July, the full moon in October and the Buddha’s birthday. The festivals follow traditional religious rituals, preserving the cultural identity of the nation.
On the whole, Nam Nha Pagoda is famous in the region not only for the beauty of its elegant architecture, tranquil scenery that can help to keep the body and mind in peace. It is also well-known because it was activated to promote awareness and literacy for the Vietnamese people in the past, especially Can Tho. It has become a significant historical sight of tourism in Can Tho. Hopefully, our sharing will help you get more useful information to prepare for a safe trip. If you need more and want to share your own experiences, don’t hesitate to comment on our website.
By Phuong Khanh