Pilgrim horde descends on Hanoi's Perfume Pagoda

By Ngoc Thanh   January 29, 2020 | 02:15 pm GMT+7

Thousands of spring pilgrims are flooding Perfume (Huong) Pagoda in Hanoi ahead of the pagoda's month-long festival that officially commences Thursday.

The Perfume Pagoda (Huong) festival is one of the most popular in Hanoi, and tens of thousands of people make the pilgrimage after Tet (Lunar New Year) to celebrate the spring festival that will last until the third lunar month, or mid-April. To get to the pagoda, people need to take a boat along Yen Stream in My Duc District.Two days before the opening the festival, hundreds of boats sit ready at piers along Yen Stream to carry passengers to the pagoda.

The Perfume Pagoda festival is one of the most popular in Hanoi, with tens of thousands of pilgrims visiting the site via boat along Yen Stream to celebrate spring.

Overcrowding has become an usual sight these days at the Huong Pagoda, in Huong Son Commune, Hanois rural district of My Duc, which is a collection of many temples and pagodas built amidst mountains and forests.The festival, one of the grandest religious festivals in the country, always attracts hundreds of thousands of Buddhists in the early days of the Lunar New Year.

Overcrowding has become common at Perfume Pagoda, in Huong Son Commune, situated amidst mountains and forests. The grand festival attracts hundreds of thousands of Buddhists in the early days of Lunar New Year.

People stood waiting for the boat at the area of Trinh Temple, the very first stop for the Perfume Pagoda. 

Visitors await a boat near Trinh Temple, the first stop towards Perfume Pagoda.

On Hoi Bridge, police and security forces continuously broadcast loudspeakers to notify boats violating traffic safety. If the boat is not fully equipped with life-jackets for visitors, boat owners will be reminded. 

On Hoi Bridge, police officials ensure boats operate safely and are equipped with life-jackets.

Huge crowds waited patiently in line for hours in front of the cable car station to catch a car to reach the Huong Tich cave, the heart of the Huong Son Complex. 

Huge crowds wait hours to catch a cable car ride to Huong Tich Cave, the heart of Huong Son Complex. Tickets cost VND180,000 ($7.74).

Around 100 meters from Huong Tich Cave, pilgrims move step by step. To escape from the crowds, visitors had to take nearly two hours.

Pilgrims proceed slowly uphill about 100 meters from the Huong Tich entrance, taking around two hours to reach the cave.

A man holding a nylon bag of fruits as offerings to the gods was stuck in long queues. 

A man holds a nylon bag of fruit offerings to the gods while stuck in line. 

A little girl sleeps on her fathers shoulders as people waited in line. 

A little girl sleeps on her father's shoulder as her family queue for luck.

The Huong Tich Cave had no empty space on Tuesday, two days before the festival officially opens. On the entrance to the cave, on a high cliff to the left, five words, Nam Thien De Nhat Dong (The best cave in the South sky) are carved. These were the words given in 1770 by Trinh Sam, a Lord from the Trinh family which ruled the country at the time.

The Huong Tich Cave had no empty space on Tuesday, two days before the festival officially opens. 

At the entrance to the cave, the words "Nam Thien De Nhat Dong" (The Best Cave in the South Sky) was carved in 1770 by Lord Trinh Sam of the Trinh family that ruled the country at the time.

To get to Huong Tich Cave, people spend total VND130,000 ($5.59), including entry ticket and ferry ticket and then climb over a kilometer of mountain road. 

According to the festival organizing committee, the pagoda has welcomed 8,000 pilgrims over the past three days. This is considered the longest spring festival of the country. 

According to festival organizers, the pagoda has welcomed 8,000 pilgrims over the past three days during Vietnam’s longest spring festival.

People try to catch some water that drops from the Huong Tich caves stalagmites to pray for luck for the new lunar year. The Huong Pagoda festival lasts from the sixth day of the first lunar month to the last day of the third lunar month, that is, from January 30 to April 22 this year. This is the longest Lunar New Year festival in the country.

Visitors try to catch some lucky water dripping from the cave’s stalagmites.

The Perfume Pagoda festival lasts from the sixth day of the first lunar month to the last day of the third lunar month, that is, from January 30 to April 22 this year. 

 
 
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