Ninh Binh Vietnam is also regarded as a famous place of spiritual tourism in Asia. One of the most popular spiritual tours in Ninh Binh is Bai Dinh pagoda tours. However, in addition to Bai Dinh pagoda, there are also many sacred pagodas here. One of those is Dich Long pagoda, a peaceful and tranquil place.
The architectural complex of Dich Long pagoda cover the total area of 1 hectare and lean on the mountain. These monuments here includes 16 monolithic stone pillars, Ly Quoc Su shrine, crescent lake, five three-floor towers, three-compartment lower pagoda, Buddha garden and the towered garden.
Having a look around the architecture and landscape of Dich Long pagoda, you will be lost in the place of peaceful meditation. The garden in tower shape give the fresh green to the atmosphere of the pagoda. In the air is a whiff of flowery perfume.
Bell Tower – Stone Temple – Buddha Garden – Three – compartment Lower Pagoda
The bell tower is in the main gate with the rocky columns. Engraved stone is the characteristic feature in Ninh Binh’s architect. And this feature is presented in any of single architectural monument in Dich Long Pagoda.
Especially, the stone temple behind the bell tower is typical for this feature. This temple is for worshiping Saint Nguyen Minh Khong. The temple contains 5 compartments and is called stone temple because its columns and other compositions were made of stone. The eight monolithic stone columns are huge and 4m high. The giant dragons were carved on these columns winding through the clouds. The engraving is so sophisticated that people may imagine that the dragons seem to flying up. The other eight column is 3m high and engraved with the Chinese characters which concisely but profoundly glorify the beauty of this place. The tourists hardly find the other temples made of precisely engraved bluestone on their Ninh Binh tour. This temple is the unique one of this historical ancient capital land.
On the left side of the stone temple is the Buddha garden. All the stone Buddha statues in this garden were erected by the master craftsmen. The garden create the sacred atmosphere for Dich Long pagoda.
Behind the stone temple is the three-compartment lower pagoda. The pagoda is on the halfway to the top of the mountain. This pagoda was related to many historical events. The surroundings of the temple left the traces of the wars. During the anti-French resistance, Dich Long pagoda is the shelter of the people and the victim of bombing raids.
Dich Long Cave
It is a beautiful cave which is 105 steps apart from the pagoda. The cave is divided into 3 parts, namely cave worshiping Buddha, dark cave and light cave. Inside the cave, the pathway is designed as the steps to make the gentle but mystic curves. The stalagmites were turned into dragons, unicorns, elephants… by the hands of the Nature. The stalagmites in the light cave are more attractive for its change of color due to the light. The color transforms from yellow to red within a day. Moreover, the visitors can make the music by knocking the stalactites of the cave, so the stalactites here are compared with the stone instrument of the mountainous people. In the dark cave, the smell of incense give the tourists the calm and serenity in their mind.
It is 50m from the lowest part of cave to the heaven gate. Standing from the heaven gate, people can have a panorama view of Dich Long pagoda and the residential area.
Althought it is not as famous as many other pagoda, Dich Long is still the name that you should not miss on your the spiritual journey to Ninh Binh. It is also the contributory factor in Ninh Binh tourism.