Information about My Son Sanctuary
My Son Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a great sample of the ancient Champa civilization located in the southern part of Vietnam. It was an independent state from around the 2nd to the 17th century, at which time it was occupied by Vietnam.
In December 1999, along with the ancient town of Hoi An, the My Son temple complex was listed on the list of world cultural heritages by UNESCO. Since then, there have been hundreds of thousands of visitors coming here every year.
The location of My Son Sanctuary
My Son Sanctuary is located in Duy Phu commune, Duy Xuyen district, Quang Nam province, about 70 km southwest of Danang, about 40 km from Hoi An city. My Son temple temple is located in a valley. with a diameter of about 2km, surrounded by hills and mountains, in a mountain circuit about 100m to 400m high from East Truong Son to My Son to Tra Kieu capital.
The history of My Son Sanctuary
Formerly this place was a Hindu holy place of the Kingdom of Champa. This is a place of holy purification, offering offerings of kings after taking the throne. My Son is the only point of Cham art that has a continuous development from the 7th to the 13th century.
My Son was also a political centre and a royal burial ground and the complex consists of more than 70 structures devoted to Hindu gods and goddesses and the most noticeable one, Shiva, was considered the protector of the Champa’s kings. Their skilful use of red bricks and sandstone is remarkable.
Like many historic sites around the world, My Son was destroyed by time and wars and after lying neglected for a long time it was rediscovered and renovated by the French in 1898. Sadly the most recent war did great damage to the complex as the Americans bombed this area knowing that the Viet Cong used it as a hiding place, mistakenly thinking that the enemy would not touch a holy site.
However, the majority of the central complex managed to survive the bombs and parts of the ruins have now been rebuilt. Overall, this Hindu sanctuary reminds visitors of other similar sites in Southeast Asia including the great Angkor Wat in Cambodia. A must-visit for those who appreciate history.
The structure of My Son sanctuary
The temple structure in My Son is divided into several clusters, built on the same principle. The structure of each cluster consists of a main temple, surrounded by small towers or auxiliary structures. The main temple symbolizes Mount Meru – the center of the universe, the place of the gods and the worship of Siva. The auxiliary temples worship the gods of heaven. Cham temples and towers are made of bricks and assembled with decorative pieces of sandstone. They are tightly packed and to this day there has been no research to identify the adhesive. After the tower wall was built, the sculptors began to carve flowers, figures, animals … onto the tower.
The technique of Cham sculpting on bricks rarely appears in other arts in the area. All temples and auxiliary structures are built of bricks with a sophisticated technique. Ornate motifs on stone pillars, round statues and sandstone reliefs based on Hindu mythology and a harmonious combination of elaborate motifs on the brick wall array outside the tower has created My Son temple complexes with vivid beauty, bearing the most distinctive features of Champa art style.
The historical significance of My Son sanctuary
Although the temples and pagodas here are not intact, they are still the best evidence to understand the development of Cham art. The highlight of the Cham sculpture is to show the vigor of human life with inward flight, refreshment, calmness and anxiety.
As a monument of great significance and historical value, My Son relic has a very important position in the arts and culture of Southeast Asia.
Opening Hours: All year round. The best time to visit is early in the morning before it gets too hot and when it is not too busy.
Location: In a small valley in Duy Tan Commune, Duy Xuyen District of Quang Nam Province (about 70km southwest of Danang and 40km from Hoi An)
And now My Son Sanctuary has a number of tourists year-round, creating favorable conditions for development, so tourism in Quang Nam in particular and tourism in Vietnam in general. Coming to Da Nang, you should not miss the ancient town of Hoi An and the ancient town of Hoi An cannot help but to visit My Son Sanctuary to explore and admire its golden age.
There will be 2 ways to get there from Da Nang and Hoi An: