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Tran Quoc Pagoda

tran quoc pagoda, far east vacation
Tran Quoc pagoda

Tran Quoc Pagoda in Hanoi is the oldest pagoda constructed in the 6th century under the reign of Emperor Ly Nam De. Tran Quoc Pagoda was founded 1,400 years ago by King Ly Nam De with the name Khai Quoc meaning "founding the country" and was located on the shores of the Red River, outside of the Yen Phu Dyke. When confronted with the river's encroachment, the temple was relocated in 1615 to Kim Ngu (Golden Fish) islet of Ho Tay (West Lake) where it is now situated. A small causeway links it to the mainland. The last major repair to the temple was undertaken in 1815 when the main sanctuary, reception hall and posterior hall of the dead were renovated.

Over the years, Tran Quoc Pagoda was variously named An Quoc (Pacification of the Realm) and Tran Bac (Guardian of the North) as well. With its harmonious architecture taking advantage of the watery landscape, the pagoda is a picturesque attraction. The sunset views from the temple grounds are renowned. Among the historic relics are statuary pieces dating to 1639. On the grounds of Tran Quoc is a Bodhi tree taken as cutting of the original tree in Bodh Gaya, India under which the Buddha sat and achieved enlightenment. The gift was made in 1959, marking the visit of the Indian president Rajendra Prasad.