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Summary of holidays in the year in Vietnam

1- New Year’s Eve

2- Lunar New Year

3- Hung Vuong’s death anniversary on March 10 of the lunar calendar

4- Liberation Day 30/4 and International Labor Day 1/5

5- National Day 2/9

Major festivals in Vietnam

1- Hung Temple Festival – Phu Tho Province 10/3 of the lunar calendar every year

The festival to commemorate the merits of building the country of 18 Hung kings was held in Phu Tho province. This is one of the biggest festivals every year.

Offerings are the “three births” (including a pig, a goat, and a cow),  chung cake, day cake, and big colorful sticky rice. After a drum is sounded, the dignitaries will enter the ceremony under the direction of the celebrant. Next, the elders of the local villages and communes around the Hung Temple come to worship. Finally, people and tourists make pilgrimages to the temples to commemorate the Hung Kings.

After the ceremony comes the festival. At the Hung Temple festival every year, a palanquin contest of the surrounding villages is held. Each year, the palanquin procession has three palanquins that go together. The first palanquin displays flowers, lamps, incense, betel nut, water jar and wine gourds. The second palanquin has incense, tablets of the saint, and a fan with many colors and solemn decoration. The third procession of banh chung and banh day, a boiled pig’s head, is left intact.

In addition, at the Hung Temple festival, there is also a worshiping ceremony (also known as Xoan singing) This is a very important and unique traditional ritual. At the foot of the mountain, folk games are played by a large number of people such as: stick throwing, cock fighting, wrestling, swinging, etc. Today, Hung Kings death anniversary is considered a great national holiday. , is the day the whole people remember their roots.

2- Yen Tu Festival – Quang Ninh province January 10th of the lunar calendar every year

Yen Tu relic site in Quang Ninh is a famous landscape throughout Vietnam. This scenic spot is the birthplace of Truc Lam Yen Tu Zen Buddhism founded by King Tran Nhan Tong.

Every January 10, the opening ceremony of the traditional Spring Festival is held with many activities such as: Ceremony of offering incense to Buddha, worshiping Truc Lam; performing arts re-enact historical, cultural and spiritual stories, legends of the revered Truc Lam sect of the Three Patriarchs; The opening ceremony of the “Sacred Seal of the Dong Pagoda” is very important at the beginning of the year, and folklore activities, Dragon dance, traditional martial arts, folk games, … are jubilant and bustling.

In particular, doing a tour to Yen Tu, visitors also have the opportunity to “touch the clouds” with a majestic height. On the top of Yen Tu, on clear days, visitors can enjoy the panoramic view of Ha Long Bay from above, bringing a very wonderful feeling.

3- Huong Pagoda Festival – Hanoi January 6 – March of the lunar calendar

Every year, every spring when apricot blossoms bloom in white mountains and forests, millions of Buddhists from all over the world are excited to visit the Huong Pagoda festival, the journey to a Buddhist land. The opening day of the Perfume Pagoda festival is on January 6 every year and usually lasts until the beginning of the third lunar month. At the ceremony, it is usually very simple, leaning towards “Zen”. However, in the outer temple, the temple worships the superior mountain gods with all colors of Taoism.

In pagoda, there is an incense offering ceremony, including incense, flowers, lamps, candles, fruits and vegetarian food. At the time of worship, there were two monks and nuns wearing kashāyas, carrying the vegetarian offerings and then going to use the offerings to the altar. While playing the piano, the two monks and nuns danced very gracefully and beautifully. From the opening day of the festival to the end of the festival, only occasionally do monks from the above temples come knocking and chanting for half an hour at temples, shrines and temples.

4- Hoi Lim – Bac Ninh province January 13th lunar calendar

Lim festival is held on January 13 every year, in Tien Du district, Bac Ninh province. Lim festival is considered as a unique crystallization of Kinh Bac cultural area with rich traditional activities, almost meeting the cultural, artistic and spiritual activities of festivals in the Bac Ninh.

The festival is also an opportunity for brothers and sisters to have the opportunity to comunicate, sing love songs, perform their very own voice and tradition. In addition, at the festival, there are many folk games such as martial arts, wrestling, chess, cooking, …

5- Tran Temple Festival – Nam Dinh

Also known as the Opening Ceremony of Tran Temple, the festival at Tran Temple is held from January 13th-15th of lunar month. The festival was solemnly celebrated with processions from surrounding communal houses and temples gathered and sacrifices at Thuong temple to worship 14 Tran kings.

The incense offering ceremony included 14 virgin girls. The festival parts of Tran temple with various forms of activities such as martial arts performances of five generations, wrestling, lion dance, playing chess… Tran temple festival is also an opportunity for every Vietnamese people to be proud to ancestor and remember about the kings and generals of the Tran dynasty.

6- Xoan Festival – Phu Tho

Every year, on January 7th, the Xoan festival takes place in Huong Nha village, Tam Thanh district, Phu Tho province. This is a festival to commemorate the talented female general Xuan Nuong of Hai Ba Trung insurgent army. The festival begins with a banquet to pray for the Spring Festival to offer to the Citadel, traditionally, people will prepare a vegetarian meal consisting of grated root and honey. On January 10th, there will be a job show at the riverbank in front of the village communal house with the roles of plowing, harrowing, sowing seeds, slapping water, selling silkworms, selling attractive and unique cotton of the Xoan association.

7- Phu Day Festival – Nam Dinh

Phu Day is the place where the Mother of God was born, the homeland with the sound of the Holy Mother and the Ancestor who gave birth to the Holy Mother. Phu Day is a complex of temples and pagodas that have been classified as a national historical relic that attracts a large number of tourists to visit, worship, and participate in folk games. The Phu Day festival is usually held from March 1st-10th of the lunar calendar in Nam Dinh.

The festival also organizes a human chess competition, and folk songs competition, sky lanterns at night, or cheo singing. In addition to spiritual cultural forms, visitors can also buy specialties of the local people, localities in the country such as longan cake, gai cake. peanut candy, rice cake, rice cake…

8- Hai Ba Trung Temple Festival

Hai Ba Trung was the leader of the historical uprising against the Dong Han(China) from Giao Chi(Vietnam), gaining independence for Dat Viet within 3 years. To commemorate the merits of two sisters, Trung Trac and Trung Nhi, every year on the 4th of January, people hold a festival to attract thousands of tourists.

The festival of Hai Ba Trung Temple is organized with many parts according to state and local rituals such as incense offering, palanquin procession and sacrifice, besides traditional folk activities, reenactment of heroic feats of the two women to commemorate as well as create unique features for visitors to learn

9- Martial arts festival Lieu Doi – Ha Nam

Lieu Doi Wrestling Festival is held on the 5th day of the first lunar month every year, at Lieu Doi village, Liem Tuc commune, Thanh Liem district, Ha Nam province. Unlike other festivals, martial arts is just a fun sport game, but in Lieu Doi festival, this is the main content.

In addition to martial arts, the Lieu Doi village festival also organizes many other fun activities such as rhyming, singing, etc.

10- Dau Pagoda Festival

Dau Pagoda Festival (Nguyen Trai Commune, Thuong Tin, Hanoi) is held annually on the 8th to 10th day of the first lunar month. Especially at Dau Pagoda, visitors will not see the image of burning votive paper or burning incense, but instead a dignified image of the temple.

11- Dong Da Festival

Dong Da mound festival takes place every year on the 5th day of the Lunar New Year at Dong Da mound, Quang Trung Ward, Dong Da District, Hanoi. This is a victory festival, held to commemorate the illustrious merits of King Quang Trung – a hero in the history of the nation against foreign invaders. During the festival, there are many fun and healthy games, showing the martial spirit.

Among them, Thang Long Fire Dragon procession is the most unique. The hometown of King Quang Trung – Nguyen Hue is Binh Khe district, Binh Dinh province. Here, people also built temples for the three Tay Son brothers, Nguyen Nhac, Nguyen Hue and Nguyen Lu. Every year, also on the 5th day of the Lunar New Year, people from all where come here to offer incense and flowers to be grateful to the heroes and martyrs and review the glorious and proud history pages of the nation. They also organize martial arts competitions, kung fu, drumming … very special.

In particular, participating in martial arts competitions are not only male but also female, so the association attracts more and more visitors.

12- Con Son Pagoda Festival

Con Son Pagoda Festival, also known as Con Son Festival or Hun Pagoda Festival, originates from the death anniversary of Truc Lam the Third Patriarch – Huyen Quang (14th century), usually held at Con Son Pagoda (Con Son Thien Tu Phuc pagoda), located at the foot of Con Son mountain, custom called Hun pagoda on January 15th-22th every year.

This is an opportunity to honor the ancestors who have contributed to building Truc Lam Zen sect, building the country, fighting foreign invaders… With the principle of drinking water to remember the source, the festival is organized by the community as a bridge between the past with the present, helping the young generation build more pride in the traditions of their homeland and country

13- Tay Phuong Pagoda Festival

The Tay Phuong Pagoda Festival starts from the 6th to the 10th of the third lunar month. On the occasion of the puppet guild or organize a performance to serve the guests. In recent years, summer activities have been increasingly noticed and expanded. Therefore, the temple festival is more and more crowded and bustling.

14- Thay Pagoda Festival

The Thay Pagoda Festival takes place from the 5th to the 7th of the third lunar month every year. During the festival, many monks and nuns from other parts of the region come here to attend the ceremony. The ceremony of worshiping the Buddha and the harp – a religious performance – is performed with a combination of ethnic musical instruments.

The Thay Pagoda Festival is not only about religious rites. There is also a water puppet show with bold folk nuances that today resonates in many countries. Elegant young men from near and far come to Thay Pagoda festival to satisfy their adventurous spirit when climbing mountains and longing to express their love in an open natural setting.

15- Hoa Lu Festival

Hoa Lu Festival is held annually from the 6th to the 9th day of the third lunar month to commemorate the national hero Dinh Bo Linh. The form of the festival includes: water procession, incense offering ceremony, fire procession, rehearsal reed flag , female sacrifice, drawing words, lion dance, blowing rice contest and familiar performances and competitions for Vietnamese people with many other traditional folk festivals.

16- Giong Festival

Giong festival at Soc temple takes place in 3 days from the 6th to the 8th of January every year. The preparation of sacrifices is also very elaborate, especially the herd of elephants (according to legend, the army participating in the war with Saint Giong has a herd of elephants carrying food) and making bamboo flower springs (symbolizing the Saint Giong’s bamboo stick after fighting the enemy), so it must be carried out many weeks before the festival.

Giong Festival is a traditional cultural festival that vividly and scientifically simulates the battles of Saint Giong and the people of Van Lang against the An enemy. Through this, it is possible to raise “community awareness of ancient forms of tribal warfare and to associate it with the inevitable nature of a people’s, all-people, comprehensive war in the cause of liberation and conservation. defend the Fatherland”.

17- Festival of Cau Ngu

This is the festival of the people of Thai Duong Ha village (in Thuan An town, Phu Vang district, Thua Thien Hue province), held on the 12th day of the first lunar month every year. Once every three years, the village holds a very grand festival. The festival commemorates Truong Quy Cong (nicknamed Truong Thieu) – the village’s tutelary emperor. He is a native of Thanh Hoa and has been instrumental in teaching the poor how to fish and trade in fishing nets.

Cau Ngu festival features games depicting the daily life of fishing, especially the image of “netting” with the meaning of skill level, boldly depicting folk rituals of coastal residents.

18- Thay – Thim temple Festival

For a long time, this festival has become a unique cultural feature of Binh Thuan province. On the 14th to 16th day of the 9th lunar month every year, right at the historical and cultural relic Dinh Thay – Thim (Tan Tien commune, Lagi town, Binh Thuan province) a big festival takes place on the occasion of the death anniversary of Mr. Thay – Thim. On the occasion of the festival, a large number of locals and tourists come to pray for health and happiness for their families, relatives and successful business.

In addition to the ancient rituals still preserved, in the festival, there are many attractive folk games such as: Ba Trao rowing, recitation of Thay’s stories, martial arts performance, basket-shaking contest, walking fish, dragon dance… creating a festive atmosphere.

19- Elephant race

Held annually in the third lunar month, the festival takes place in Buon Don or in the open forests along the Serepok River. The largest river of Dak Lak Province.

Before entering the race, a horn sounded and each group of elephants controlled by the mahout stood at the starting position. When there is a command to start, the elephants will race forward in the sound of gongs, drums, cheers and cheers echoing through the mountains.

20- New rice festival

For ethnic minorities in the Central Highlands, the god of rice is respected no less than other gods. After the annual harvest, people hold a ceremony to eat new rice, to give thanks to the gods, and to express their joy in enjoying the results of a tiring process. Harvest festival of the Ma is the biggest festival of the year and usually lasts 7 days. The Bana people’s new rice-eating ceremony takes place only for three days, when the harvest has begun. And Somah Kek festival takes place when mass rice harvest. Finally, the closing ceremony of the warehouse.

21- Buffalo stabbing festival

This is a fairly popular festival of ethnic minorities in the Central Highlands and in the North of the Southeast region. The buffalo stabbing ceremony takes place at leisure (when people rest to prepare for a new farming season), around March or April of the lunar calendar.

For ethnic minorities in the Central Highlands, buffalo is often used as a sacrifice to the gods because they symbolize prosperity. Buffalo meat is shared by people in the village to celebrate. After the rituals of worshiping the gods, the buffalo is led to a pole at the base of a tree in the middle of the yard. All old, young, boys and girls in the village dance together to the music of gongs and gongs. After that, a team of buffalo stabbing, armed with spears and all young men, will enter the yard to start stabbing the buffalo.

22- Ok Om Bok Festival

The festival, also known as the Moon worshiping ceremony of the Khmer ethnic group in the South, is held on the full moon day and begins when the moon rises. Derived from folk beliefs, the moon is known as the god of crop protection, so the Khmer often organize Ok Om Bok festival on the full moon day of the 10th lunar month every year as to thank the gods for giving favorable rain. According to the Khmer custom, after the ceremony of worshiping the Moon, there will be a racing festival, attracting tens of thousands of people to participate.

23- Bay Nui bull racing festival, An Giang

The bull racing festival takes place from late August to early September (August 29 – September 2) in Tri Ton district, An Giang province. This is a festival imbued

 with the folklore identity of the Khmer ethnic group in the Southwest region. The pairs of cows participating in the festival are selected from the strongest and fastest cows.

About 2 months before the festival, cows are rested, eaten and trained according to a special regimen to prepare for the race. The bustling and attractive bull racing festival every year attracts thousands of visitors.

24 – Khmer New Year Chol Chnam Thmey

Chol Chnam Thmey is the traditional New Year of the Khmer people, taking place in mid-April, lasting for 3 days. At this time, people clean and decorate their houses beautifully, prepare a lot of food, fruit cakes, children are often bought for new clothes.

On the first day, people bring offerings to the temple for the procession of the calendar. On the second day, the ceremony to offer breakfast and lunch to the monks at the temple and then build sand mountains in 8 directions to find a predestined relationship. The third day is the bathing ceremony of the Buddha statue to wash away the bad luck of the old year and welcome the new year. During the Chol Chnam Thmey festival, people often visit each other, but the main activities still take place at the temple.

25- Go Thap Festival

Go Thap Festival is the largest and most extensive festival in Dong Thap, held twice a year in the March and November of the lunar calendar. Since 10 years, Go Thap festival has become a big festival in the southern provinces. At every festival, it seems that the life of the people of Thap Muoi district is also different, also bustling with each group of tourists from all over the world.

The festival in Go Thap has two distinct parts: the ritual ceremony and the festival part. In addition to the main worshiping ceremonies in each festival such as worshiping Ba Chua Xu, worshiping Thien Ho Duong, Doc Binh Kieu also has a number of other auxiliary rituals such as: worshiping the God of Nong, praying for peace, asking for birth, … Go Thap festival is bold folk character and imprint of a time of opening the world, reflecting the aspirations and earnest wishes of Dong Thap farmers.

Visiting architectural monuments, praying, witnessing traditional cultural and artistic activities, that is the reason why more and more tourists have come to attend the Go Thap festival from the past to the present.

26- Nghinh Ong Festival

Nghinh Ong festival, also known as Ong fish festival, is usually held annually by fishermen in coastal areas. It is the biggest type of water festival for fishermen. The date of the event varies from place to place. Usually there will be two parts at the festival: the procession and the traditional sacrifice.

To open, the Festival Organizing Committee sounded 3 drums and 3 gongs as a signal for the lion and dragon group to perform the ritual “opening the water minister”. Elders lead the procession to accompany the Ong fish image, made of paper about 10m long, beautifully decorated. As for the festival, there are fun and healthy folk games related to fishermen’s activities such as fish-carrying contests, net weaving, tug of war, sea swimming, blindfolded pot beating, fishing.

27- Festival of the Lady Chua Xu Temple

The festival of Ba Chua Xu Temple takes place in Chau Doc, An Giang. The Temple of Goddess Xu is a large sacred work, located at the foot of Sam mountain. This place is famous not only in the Western region but also throughout the country for its mystical sacredness. That is why, every year, millions of pilgrims come here to pray for fortune and luck.

The festival is held every year and starts from the night of the 23rd to the 27th of the fourth lunar month. During the holidays, there are also cultural activities such as Bong dancing, Boi singing… Especially, from the night of the 23rd, people gathered at the temple to watch the ritual of bathing Ba. The statue was brought down and used rain water mixed with perfume to bathe.

The annual Ba festival attracts a large number of tourists from all over the world, both to attend folk festivals, to ask for fortune and luck, and to travel and admire the beautiful natural scenery in Sam mountain and historical sites, such as: Thoai Ngoc Hau Tomb, Tay An Pagoda…

28- Ba Den Mountain Spring Festival

On the 4th day of the first lunar month, the spring festival of Ba Den mountain takes place in Tay Ninh – the highest mountain in the Southeast region, on the mountain there are many caves and temples to worship the gods. The main deity on the mountain is Linh Son Thanh Mau who is worshiped in the Ba Palace in the middle of the mountain. Legend has it that she is very holy, anyone who has a heart to pray will receive her prayer.

Therefore, for many generations, this place has become a destination for tourists from all over the world coming to Ba Den Mountain, visitors also have the opportunity to see the beautiful scenery below with majestic mountains from the cable car. Besides, the festival also has many other fun activities such as movie screenings, art performances, sports competitions, folk games, …

29- Festival of Lai Thieu pagoda, Binh Duong

Every year, on the full moon day of the first lunar month at Ba Thien Hau temple, which people often call Ba Pagoda, the Ba palanquin procession festival takes place. Ba Thien Hau pagoda festival ends with the procession of Ba Thien Hau palanquin through the roads in the inner suburbs of Lai Thieu ward, Thuan An town.

The belief of worshiping Ba Thien Hau followed the Chinese immigrants to the South, Vietnam from the 17th to the 19th centuries, and became a fairly popular form of Mother Goddess worship in the Southern Delta.

Thien Hau Temple Festival is valuable in many aspects in the cultural life of the community. The festival is also an opportunity for relatives to meet each other, to tighten the spirit of community solidarity, an indispensable element in Asian society in the past and present. The Chinese community borrows the custom of worshiping Thien Hau to perform its traditional educational function, orienting its community on character and noble living ethics.

Through this belief, the Chinese preserve their ethnic cultural characteristics, especially elements of fine customs and traditions of the people. The procession festival has attracted a large number of people living in the town to see and follow the procession. The palanquin set off, along with the performances of the lion-monk-dragon troupes that followed, created an exciting atmosphere with many acrobatics, tricks, and fun, carrying the message of wishing for a new year of good weather and rain. People’s life is more and more prosperous and happy.

30- Ban flower festival

This is a famous festival in the Northwest region of the Thai ethnic group. Ban flower festival, also known as Xen Ban or Xen Muong, is held in the second lunar month every year, when the Northwest mountains and forests are covered with a beautiful color of Ban flowers.

This festival is also a festival of love between couples, family happiness, and at the same time a festival to pray for a good harvest, have fun and sing love songs together on moonlit nights.

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