Sights around Hanoi , Temple of Literature @Hanoi

Posted: February 27, 2012 in @ Old Klang Road

Greetings from Hanoi..

It’s freezing  outside, I think temperature is probably around 10C. or maybe less …BBrrrr…..

Touched down in Hanoi yesterday, flights from KL to Hanoi via AirAsia  is  at not very friendly hour of 6:15 am, which meant having to wake up ~ 3:30 am, and on a Sunday…bahhhh ! This is for a ( short) working trip.

 Work starts on Monday, so we had 1 day of leisure, immediately after checking in and dropping our luggage my colleague and I headed out to explore Hanoi. My colleague was well prepared with a map of Hanoi printed from the Net and compass, while I had also printed a map, I am basically directionless, so a map is not much of use to me  🙂

We decide to head towards the Temple of Literature/ Temple of Confucious. Along the way, we passed Ba Ngo Pagoda ( aka Ngoc Ho Pagoda)

Extracted from , click on the website to read the romatic history of Ba Ngo Pagoda  

The pagoda was erected under the King Ly Than Tong’s reign (1127-1128) on a underground stream. There is a well inside the pagoda where the local people come to get water. Accordingly, it has name “Ngọc Hồ” (Pearl Pond).

Under the Lê dynasty (15th-18th century), wife of a rich Chinese merchant donated money to rebuild the temple, making it larger. Since then, Ngọc Hồ pagoda had been named after “Bà Ngô” to memorize her generousity. Even though she got married to a Ngô Khách man (a Chinese), she still kept the homeland in her heart, endowing and rebuilding the pagoda.

Some prayers were going on during the time of our visit, lots of chanting..

Plates of food were laid out at a side table,not sure what these were but they look a bit like tau pok

Continued with our journey…saw a  telephone booth that seemed to also have a secondary  function as a store for the peddlers nearby..

Peddlers selling waterchestnut ( peeled), steamed sweet potatoes and tapioca

A temple across the road from the Confucious temple

Fancy getting a haircut ? I think the barber must be pretty fed-up with the tourists taking photos of his activity , can you see the sign ‘photo 1$ ?

Finally, we arrived at the Confucious temple..entrace fee was VD20,000 (~RM3.30), there was a very big crowd waiting to go in, and I think the tourist were outnumbered by the locals.

 Extracted from( and please click on the link to read more)  The Temple of Literature is one of the most popular landmarks of Ha Noi (Pho Quốc Tử Giám, Tel 845 2917, admission 5000 Dong). The term “temple” may mislead a lot of people into believing the complex is a religious site. Văn Miếu, in fact, is a Confucian memorial place dedicated to the centuries of education and literature in Vietnam. Founded in 1070 by King Ly Thánh Tông, the temple was built to pay tribute to the Chinese philosopher Khong Tu (Confucius), his scholars and people with high academic achievement. In 1076, the Quốc Tử Giám (or Imperial Academy) was founded. As Vietnam’s first university, it was initially opened to educate the aristocrats, nobles and royal family members. In the later years, the school was opened to talented commoners. Through its history, over two thousand doctors have graduated from the university.

Some interesting landscaping

There are 5 courtyards in all, and this is one of the  gateway

At the third courtyard is a square lake –  the Well of Heaven’s Clarity

Beside the lake are pavilions and , following extract from website quoted above On both sides of the lake are pavilions with stelae, each sits upon stone tortoises and holding inscriptions of names, birth places and achievements of doctorate recipients from periods 1442 to 1780, where the Vietnam capital was moved to Hue. There are 82 stelae presently standing in Văn Miếu, where some 34 others are believed to have been lost over the years.

I think this was the fourth courtyard,  leading to the busiest part of the temple

From our observation, parents and the children come to this temple to pray to do well  in exams. The battery of my camera choose to, at this time to go flat…so, there were some time lapse and I missed a few pictures…there was an intereting scene where many young adults were using their fingers to write invisible text ( their wishes) on the walls of  the ‘altar-like’ structures

Lighting the incense

I rather fancy this intricate incense holder..

One of the souvenir shop ..selling minitures steale complete tortise

A birdhouse ..chirrpp chirpppp

And a well insulated  cute babe..


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