Yen Tu Pagoda festival lasts until the end of Lunar March, but tourists can fully explore the landscapes, historical sites and go sightseeing in only a day.
Yen Tu Mountain of 1068m above sea level is a part of Dong Trieu Mountain Range in Northeastern Vietnam and is located at the boundary of the two provinces of Bac Giang and Quang Ninh. The total length of the road to the top of Yen Tu (Bronze Pagoda) is approximately 6,000m and it takes visitors 6 hours of continuous walking through thousands of stone steps, mountain road to reach the top… Although two cable cars were put into operation and serve the need of sightseeing and pilgrimage of visitors, many people still want to challenge themselves by climbing to the pagoda.
Yen Tu Pagoda Festival
In Yen Tu, there is the Spring Festival, which is usually held annually from the 10th of January and lasts until the end of lunar March.
How to reach Yen Tu
You can travel to Yen Tu by motorcycle, private car and buses. Visitors from Hai Phong, Quang Ninh, Bac Ninh can go to Yen Tu by motorbike because it is very convenient.
From Hai Phong, Thai Binh, Nam Dinh, you only need to go to Uong Bi (the junction of Highway 10 and Highway 8), then turn left to get to Trinh temple, then turn left another 10km to reach Yen Tu).
From the direction of Hanoi, you can travel to Bac Ninh you go to Highway 18, go straight to Trinh temple. From here, you turn left and go another 10 km to set foot on Yen Tu.
Travelers from Hanoi often go in groups, buy a tour to visit Yen Tu in a day or take a bus. You can catch a bus in My Dinh Bus Station going to Cam Pha, Mong Cai … then get off in Trinh Temple on Highway 18. After that, catch a 16 seat bus provided by Tung Lam company in Highway 18 to go to the foot of Yen Tu Mountain (10 km) with the fare of 20,000 VND / person. Besides, you can take the public bus with 10,000 VND/person/ticket.
Things to bring
Money: You bring only enough money, you should not bring too much in case of being robbed in crowded days.
Shoes: You should not wear leather shoes or dress shoes; instead, you should wear sport shoes (probably bata) or hiking shoes. The road leading to the peak includes a trail, so visitors can leave shoes, rent sandals at the foot of the mountain.
Backpacks: Since you visit Yen Tu during the day, so you bring a small, light backpack to store some food and drinking water.
Clothing: When traveling to Yen Tu in the spring, you just bring light clothes such as light jackets which are warm enough to tie around your waist while climbing or put in your backpack.
Water: You should buy 2 bottles of 500 ml before or a bottle of 1.5 liters to drink along the way because water is sold much more expensive on the mountain.
Food: Some food you can bring to each at lunch includes sandwiches, milk, bread, sticky rice… Also, you can have lunch on the mountain with sausage, corn, potatoes, noodles… but you have to pay higher prices than usual.
Sticks: If you walk to the Holy peak, you are advised to buy a stick of bamboo with 5,000 VND at the foothill. This stick will help you reduce the tiredness, especially when you go down, your knee will not hurt.
Tourist attractions in Yen Tu
Trinh Pagoda/ Trinh Temple: places to visit before climbing to Yen Tu
Truc Lam Yen Tu Buddhist Zen Monastery: This is the place where monks and laymen study. Like universities, this is not a place of worship, but you can visit before climbing to the Holy Peak.
Giai Oan (exculpating) Bridge, Giai Oan Pagoda: This is the shrine of the Imperial maids and concubines of King Tran Nhan Tong. They loved the king so much and wanted to go the mountain and begged him to return to the court; however, the King refused, so they killed themselves by hurling to the stream.
Hue Quang Tower: This tower is the storage part of the relics of King Tran Nhan Tong, the rest is stored in Tran temple in Nam Dinh.
Hoa Yen Pagoda: This is the center temple, also the largest temple in Yen Tu complex. Previously, the ancient Hoa Yen Pagoda was the place where Buddha Emperor Tran Nhan Tong preached.
Mot Mai (One Roof) Temple: It is the shrine of Buddha Avalokitesvara, there is a very cool course of water here.
Bao Sai Pagoda: Buddha Emperor Tran Nhan Tong achieved Nirvana here.
Van Tieu pagoda: is the place where the monks were trained.
An Ky Sinh and the Statue of Buddha Emperor Tran Nhan Tong: They are a statue of a petrified monk and a huge bronze statue of Buddha Emperor Tran Nhan Tong.
Dong (Bronze) Pagoda: is the highest temple on the top of the mountain.
Schedule: Monastery – Giai Oan Bridge – Giai Oan Pagoda – Hoa Yen Pagoda – Mot Mai Temple – Bao Sai Pagoda – An Ky Sinh and the Statue of Buddha Emperor Tran Nhan Tong – Dong Pagoda – An Ky Sinh – Bao Sai Pagoda (going down) – Hoa Yen pagoda – Giai Oan pagoda – the parking area.