One of the most spectacular Buddhist festivals in northern Vietnam, this epic three-month event in My Duc District is split into two parts: ceremonial rituals and entertaining activities. Expect monks giving blessings, alongside beautiful dances and flower shows. Pilgrims also take boat trips and go mountain climbing.
The three-month Yen Tu Festival, held within a majestic mountain range in north-eastern Vietnam, starts on the 10th day of the first lunar month. After holding a small ritual at the base of Yen Tu Mountain, tens of thousands of pilgrims journey to a shrine at the summit in an effort to realize personal dreams or get rid of sorrow.
The Elephant Race Festival is a full-day event held in Don Village, usually in spring. People from all over come to watch the race and also show off their colorful outfits. Trained elephants gallop across the 500m track with frightening speed and power. After the main event, the elephants also compete in swimming and tug-of-war contests.
The Lim Festival in Bac Ninh is a rich Vietnamese cultural festival taking place on the 13th day of the first lunar month. Just outside Hanoi, Lim Village welcomes many visitors, most of whom are coming to see (and hear) the famous Quan Ho show. This ancient ritual involves a ‘dialogue’ sung in a unique Vietnamese style.