Boat rowing on the Yen Stream at the Perfume Pagoda

Perfume Pagoda

The Perfume Pagoda is actually a complex of pagodas built into mountain cliffs located 60 km (2 hour drive) southwest of Ha Noi. This area is the destination for Vietnamese Buddhist Pilgrims during Buddhist festival time which is from the 6th of the first lunar month through the 15th of the third lunar month. In the festival's time, Perfume Pagoda may receive up to 30, 000 visitors/day.

Rice field on the way to the Perfume Pagoda
Rice field on the way to the Perfume Pagoda

 

Trinh Temple  at the Perfume Pagoda
Trinh Temple  at the Perfume Pagoda

The Perfume Pagoda was built from the 3rd century A.D, but most of the pagodas on the site were destroyed by the French when they came to Vietnam. The current structures left on the site have been rebuilt many times.

Scenic boat trip at the Perfume Pagoda
Scenic boat trip at the Perfume Pagoda

The highlights of the trip to the Perfume Pagoda include the rowing boat trip on a river with beautiful scenery, a hiking trip to the top of the mountains and especially of the heavenly atmosphere on a quiet day.

 

Unreal landscape at the Perfume Pagoda
Unreal landscape at the Perfume Pagoda

From Ha Noi you can hire motorbike or a car and follow the road to Ha Dong Town of Ha Tay Province. Passing Ha Dong 3km you turn left and drive till the end of the road which is Duc Khe Village or the starting point for the complex of Perfume Pagodas.

The heavenly mountains and river at the Perfume Pagoda
The heavenly mountains and river at the Perfume Pagoda

 At Duc Khe, you'll acquire the entrance tickets and embark on a rowing boat on the Yen Stream to Thien Tru Pagoda. The boat trip is 1h15 minutes and offers surreal country scenery!

 
Unreal landscape at the Perfume Pagoda
Rowing boat to the Perfume Pagoda

Disembark the rowing boat at Thien Tru Pagoda, you'll start the hiking tour along the solo path leading to the top of the mountain where Huong Tich Cave Pagoda is located. Huong Tich meaning the vestige of fragrance is a big cave, claimed to be of the best caves in Vietnam by Trinh Lord in the 17th century. On the way to top, there are many cave pagodas found and normally you can spend a few hours visiting pagodas on the way to the top.

Tam Quan Gate to the Thien Tru Pagoda
Tam Quan Gate to the Thien Tru Pagoda

Altenatively you can get on a cable car which offers stunning panoramic views of the surrounding nature of the Perfume Pagoda.

 

Thien Tru Pagoda from above
Thien Tru Pagoda from above
 

 

The Thien Tru Pagoda
The Thien Tru Pagoda
 
 
 
 
The Thien Tru Pagoda
The Thien Tru Pagoda
 
 
 
 
Forest at the Perfume Pagoda
Forest at the Perfume Pagoda
 
 
 
 
  Huong Tich Cave at Hung Tich Mountain
Huong Tich Cave at Hung Tich Mountain
 
 
 
 
  Huong Tich Cave at Hung Tich Mountain
Huong Tich Cave at Hung Tich Mountain

Normally the Vienamese pilgrims would tour the complex of Perfume Pagodas in 2 days, they would stay overnight at a local guest house.

Totally the day trip to Perfume Pagoda can range from 8 - 12 hours.