My Son Sanctuary: An Historic Site for Indian Travelers In 2024

My Son Sanctuary

My Son Sanctuary is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Vietnam that showcases the ancient culture and architecture of the Champa civilization. It is a must-see destination for Indian tourists who want to explore the rich history and diversity of Southeast Asia. In this article, you will learn about the history, significance, and features of My Son Sanctuary, as well as how to plan your visit and what to expect. Discover the beauty and mystery of My Son sanctuary with us!

Brief information

Historical values of My Son Sanctuary

My Son Sanctuary tower temples took shape over ten centuries in the heart of the Dua Clan’s ancestral homeland, where they united the Cham clans and formed the Champapura Kingdom in 192 CE. This culture, located along the coast of present-day Vietnam, drew its spiritual inspiration from Hinduism. From the 4th to the 13th centuries CE, people built many temples devoted to Hindu deities like Krishna, Vishnu, and especially Shiva.

In 1995 UNESCO recognised My Son Sanctuary as a World Heritage Site, as well as a testimony of the rich and diverse heritage of the Cham civilisation, which flourished in Southeast Asia for over a millennium. The site is also a witness to the history of Vietnam, as wars and natural disasters damaged it over time.

The architectural legacy of My Son Sanctuary

My Son Sanctuary

The architecture of the My Son Sanctuary reflects the influence of Indian Hinduism on the Cham culture, as well as the adaptation to the local environment and materials. It is separated into multiple clusters, each created using the same approach. The main temple represents Mount Meru, the centre of the universe where deities gather to worship Lord Shiva. Surrounding this central temple are towers dedicated to guardian deities, each supervising a cardinal direction, with devotion to linga-yoni (symbolizing life force) or Shiva sculptures.

The entire complex, including the towers and temples, is built of bricks and embellished with artistic sandstone carvings. A distinguishing feature is the precise arrangement of bricks and stones, which are securely fitted together, with the binding material remaining unknown to this day. Even the brick-firing procedure remains a mystery.  My Son temples also contain many inscriptions in Sanskrit and Cham languages that reveal important historical and religious information about the Champa Kingdom.

Location

My Son Sanctuary is situated 20 km west of Tra Kieu, 45 km west of Hoi An City, 68 km southwest of Da Nang City, and 145 km south of Hue. This area is nestled in a 2 km diameter valley surrounded by hills and mountains.

How to get there 

From Hanoi

The easiest way to get to My Son Sanctuary from Hanoi is to take a flight from Noi Bai International Airport to Da Nang International Airport, which takes about an hour and a half. From there, you can either rent a car, take a taxi, or book a tour to My Son Sanctuary. The drive from Da Nang to My Son takes about an hour and a half as well.

From Da Nang center

If you are staying in Da Nang city centre, you can also take a bus, or motorbike to My Son Sanctuary. The bus departs from Da Nang Central Bus Station and costs about $0.3 – $1 per person. The motorbike rental costs about $6.25 per day and gives you more flexibility and freedom to explore the area.

From Hoi An centre 

You can also take a shuttle bus, taxi, Grab, or motorbike to My Son Sanctuary. The shuttle bus departing from Hoi An to My Son costs about $8 per person. The taxi costs about $16.6 for a round trip. The motorbike rental costs about $10 per day and allows you to enjoy the scenic countryside along the way.

What to expect when visiting the My Son sanctuary 

Champa Temples and Towers

My Son Sanctuary

Explore the Champa temples and towers that are dedicated to Shiva, the supreme god of Hinduism. You can see different architectural styles and decorative motifs that evolved, as well as sandstone sculptures and inscriptions that reveal the religious and political life of the Cham kings.

My Son Sanctuary Museum

My Son Sanctuary

Learn more about the history and culture of the Cham people at My Son Sanctuary Museum, where you can see artifacts, models, photos, and videos that explain the origin, development, and decline of the Champa Kingdom. The museum also displays some of the objects that were recovered from the site after it was heavily bombed during the Vietnam War.

Apsara dance

My Son Sanctuary

Watch a traditional Apsara dance performance that showcases the graceful movements and colourful costumes of the Cham dancers. The dance is inspired by Hindu mythology and expresses the harmony between humans and nature. The performance takes place at a stage near the entrance of the site every day at 9:30 am and 2:00 pm.

Kate festival

My Son Sanctuary

Watch a traditional Apsara dance performance that showcases the graceful movements and colorful costumes of the Cham dancers. The dance is inspired by Hindu mythology and expresses the harmony between humans and nature. The performance takes place at a stage near the entrance of the site every day at 9:30 am and 2:00 pm

Scenic Surroundings

My Son Sanctuary

Witness the sunrise in My Son Sanctuary over the red brick towers that reflect the spiritual beliefs and artistic skills of the Cham people. The best time to visit is early in the morning or late in the afternoon to enjoy the sunset in My Son Sanctuary when the light creates a magical atmosphere and the crowds are smaller.

Useful tips

  • Here are some useful tips to make your trip more enjoyable and memorable:
  • Carry a water bottle
  • Plan your visit early in the morning or later in the afternoon to avoid the peak heat of the day.
  • Dress modestly and respectfully, as this is a sacred site for many people. Avoid short and revealing clothes, and wear comfortable shoes.
  • Respect the religious and cultural significance of the site
  • Enjoy the scenic views and take lots of photos, but be careful not to touch or damage anything
  • Contact Vietnamtour.in to have a perfect trip

Conclusion

The My Son Sanctuary is a fascinating destination for Indian visitors who want to learn more about the culture and history of Vietnam and Southeast Asia. The site offers a unique insight into the spiritual and artistic achievements of the Cham people, as well as their interaction with other civilizations in the region. Grab your pals and pack a Vietnam tour package to explore one of the Top 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Vietnam You Should Not Miss 2024

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