Kinh Mon is a famed region in Hai Duong province, which hosts various beautiful landscapes including a special national complex of An Phu - Kinh Chu - Nham Duong.
Ancient: Early people set up a pagoda inside Kinh Chu grotto to worship Buddha. Photos: VNS/Tran Mai Huong
An Phu Mountain peaks at 246m above sea level, with An Phu Temple located on the peak together with Tuong Van Pagoda and the statue of national hero Tran Hung Dao (1228-1300).
An Phu Temple, also known as Cao Temple, is dedicated to An Sinh Vuong Tran Lieu (1211-1251), older brother of King Tran Thai Tong (1218-1277), the first king of the Tran reign (1225-1400). An Sinh Vuong Tran Lieu was also the father of Tran Hung Dao.
Tran Lieu was given the area by the king to establish a village. On his death day, the first day of the fourth lunar month, has become the annual festival day of Cao Temple.
Next to Cao Temple lies ancient Tuong Van Pagoda, also called as Cao Pagoda, under the shadow of big trees. The pagoda honours Buddhist King Tran Nhan Tong. The pagoda hosts an ancient well, in half circle form.
From the peak, tourists can have an aerial view over the whole region with mountains, rivers, villages and beautiful fields.
Tran Hung Dao’s statue is 50m below Cao Temple. The statue stands 13m tall and was built in 1993, with General Vo Nguyen Giap placing the first foundation stone. Beside the stature runs a clay baked relief of 45m long describing the fight against Yuan-Mongol invaders by Dai Viet people directed by General Tran Hung Dao.
Near An Phu Temple is Kinh Chu Grotto on Duong Nham karst mountain range. The grotto has three big caves running deep inside the mountain with spectacular stalactites and stalagmites. Early people set up a pagoda inside the grotto to worship Buddha.
Pham Su Manh (1300-1377), a mandarin and famed scholar in the Tran reign used to come to the grotto to read books. There are 40 poems by various culturists over time carved at the grotto.
Nearby is Nham Duong archaeological excavation site with various traces of early human beings in 26 caves. Experts unearthed fossilised bones of early humans and stone working tools dating back 35,000 years.
Stunning: People can have a view over the region on An Phu peak
Honour: Temple dedicated to An Sinh Vuong Tran Lieu, father of Tran Hung Dao
Learn something: There are 40 poems carved in Kinh Chu grotto
Not just a road: Statue of national hero Tran Hung Dao
Leafy: Tuong Van Pagoda lies the under shadow of big trees