The Thien Mu pagoda is one of the must see Hue tourist attractions, the Pagoda also known as Linh Mu Pagoda of Hue. Once upon a time, local residents saw an old lady in red appear every night on top of the hill. She foretold that: one day, the Lord would pass by and build something of great importance. From then on, the hill was named Thien Mu Son (Mountain of Lady from Heaven). When Lord Nguyen Hoang actually went pass the hill, he heard the legend and decided to build a pagoda and named it Thien Mu. Having gone through a lot of eventful phase, damages as well as renovations, today the pagoda still exists and remains the unofficial symbol of the ancient city Hue.
Address: Kim Long Road, Hue City, Central Vietnam
Opening hours: Early in the morning till 5 PM
The Thien Mu Pagoda is famous for its seven-storey octagonal tower that is named Phuoc Duyen Tower that is also named Tu Nhan Tower is some references. The Pagoda itself was built in mid-19th century by the order of King Thieu Tri, the Phuoc Duyen tower was built to commemorate the 80th birthday anniversary of the king’s his grandmother.
When enter the Pagoda you’ll pass the 12 big wooden sculptures of fearsome temple guardians and then in the middle of the area is where Dai Hung Palace – the main sanctuary of Thien Mu Pagoda, is located. Here, Buddha is worshiped with impressive sculptures and a giant bell, measuring 2.5m in height and 2 tons in weight, created since early 18th century. Fragrant incense smoke fills the air there all day long, making the praying for blessings calm and peaceful.
Visiting the Thien Mu Pagoda can be done both as part of your Vietnam tours in Hue, or you just visit it if you are traveling on your own, the tourists always enjoy both the scenery landscape and the typical traditional architecture of pagodas.
Thien Mu Pagoda is about 4km from the center of the Hue City, you can get there by motorbike, bicycle and or by boat. If you take a boat trip, then don’t forget to include visiting Hon Chen Temple and Minh Mang Tomb. A bike-trip is fun and also recommended, since the road is very scenic and rather short. Travelers can also combine a trip to Thien Mu Pagoda with Hue Temple of Literature and Huyen Khong Pagoda, which are just a few km away.
“Avoid wearing tight and short clothes like short skirts when visiting the pagoda, since entrance to the main hall Dai Hung is not allowed for those wearing these costumes. Also, don’t make noise when visiting the pagoda.”