Temple Of Literature
Temple Of Literature

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Nestled in the heart of Hanoi, the Temple of Literature stands as a testament to Vietnam's rich cultural and educational legacy. A journey through its hallowed halls takes travelers on a historical odyssey, offering a profound insight into the country's academic traditions, architectural splendor, and reverence for knowledge.

Origins and Significance

Founded in 1070 by Emperor Ly Thanh Tong, the Temple of Literature, known as "Van Mieu" in Vietnamese, is not only a place of worship but also a center of learning and intellectual pursuit. Initially established to honor Confucius and his teachings, the temple evolved over the centuries to become Vietnam's first national university.

The architecture of the Temple of Literature reflects a harmonious blend of traditional Vietnamese and Chinese styles. From the moment visitors pass through the main gate, known as the Great Portico, they are transported to an era where scholars pursued wisdom and learning was venerated.

Architectural Grandeur

The Temple of Literature is renowned for its well-preserved architectural features, including five distinct courtyards connected by pathways and gates. Each courtyard represents a specific stage in an academic's journey, creating a symbolic progression toward knowledge and enlightenment.

  1. Great Portico (Van Mieu Mon): The grand entrance, adorned with majestic stone pillars and a triple gate, welcomes visitors into the Temple complex. The gate is an architectural masterpiece, showcasing intricate carvings and inscriptions.

  2. The First Courtyard (Dai Trung Mon): Once past the Great Portico, the First Courtyard features the Khue Van Cac Pavilion, an iconic symbol of Hanoi. The pavilion, with its distinctive roof and delicate details, is a visual testament to the temple's cultural significance.

  3. The Second Courtyard (Sau Mon): Beyond the Khue Van Cac Pavilion, the Second Courtyard is adorned with stone stelae mounted on the backs of stone turtles. These stelae bear the names of successful candidates who passed the imperial examinations, a tradition that lasted for several centuries.

  4. The Third Courtyard (Thuong Dien): Dedicated to Confucius, the Third Courtyard houses the main hall where ceremonies and rituals honoring Confucius and scholars took place. The tranquil pond and lush greenery add to the serene ambiance.

  5. The Fourth Courtyard (Dai Thanh Mon): This courtyard is home to the Thien Quang Tinh, a bell tower standing tall against the Hanoi skyline. The bell once echoed through the temple, signaling important events and marking the passage of time.

The Stelae of Success

One of the most intriguing aspects of the Temple of Literature is the collection of stone stelae in the Second Courtyard. These stelae, mounted on stone turtles, carry the names of scholars who achieved success in the imperial examinations held during the Le and Mac dynasties.

The stelae not only serve as historical records but also showcase the remarkable achievements of those who dedicated themselves to the pursuit of knowledge. The inscriptions on the stelae provide a glimpse into the intellectual accomplishments of scholars across different periods.

The Literary Pavilions

Throughout the Temple of Literature, visitors will find pavilions dedicated to various aspects of learning and literature. The Van Mieu Pavilion, situated on the eastern side of the First Courtyard, houses altars and statues of Confucius and his disciples. The Thu Van Pavilion, located in the Second Courtyard, is a place where scholars gathered to compose poetry and engage in intellectual discussions.

These pavilions, adorned with beautiful calligraphy and timeless artwork, offer visitors a tranquil retreat where they can reflect on the profound impact of literature and education on Vietnamese culture.

Contemporary Relevance

While the Temple of Literature is a historical treasure, it remains a vibrant and relevant symbol of education in modern Vietnam. The site continues to inspire students and scholars alike, serving as a backdrop for academic events and cultural celebrations. Graduation ceremonies and academic conferences held within the temple complex connect the past with the present, emphasizing the enduring spirit of learning.

Exploring the Temple

Visitors to the Temple of Literature are invited to embark on a self-guided journey through its captivating courtyards, pavilions, and stelae. Guided tours are also available for those seeking a deeper understanding of the historical and cultural nuances embedded in the temple's architecture and symbolism.

As you wander through the temple grounds, take a moment to appreciate the serenity of the surroundings, the intricate details of the architecture, and the cultural significance of each courtyard. The reflective ponds, ancient trees, and well-manicured gardens enhance the overall experience, creating an atmosphere of contemplation and reverence.


The Temple of Literature in Hanoi is not merely a historical site; it is a living testament to the enduring spirit of learning and knowledge. As travelers traverse its timeless courtyards, adorned with architectural marvels and commemorative stelae, they become part of a narrative that spans centuries.

From the grandeur of the Great Portico to the tranquility of the literary pavilions, the Temple of Literature invites visitors to connect with the essence of Vietnamese culture and scholarship. It stands as a beacon of intellectual pursuit, reminding us that the pursuit of knowledge transcends time and continues to shape the cultural identity of a nation.

Nearby Attractions

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Traveler Reviews

Showing 31 of 13,264 Reviews
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Un templo con mucha historia, donde se puede apreciar como se estudiaba hace años, sus reglas, costumbres y objetos para dar buena suerte. Excepto por la señora que entrega los tickets, qué era bastante antipática, debéis visitarlo, ya que entraréis en una zona de calma, dentro del bullicio de la ciudad. Un Detalle a tener en cuenta, el precio son 70000VND/persona y un precio reducido para estudiantes menores de 16 años.
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...traditionsreiche Schule/ Uni aus der Vorzeit mitten in Hanoi
很棒的地方,很有意義的景點,我還教大家寫書法
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Nơi này quá nhiều công trình kiến trúc tiêu biểu của ông cha ta
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Ein eindrucksvoller Ort
Very interesting history and appealing buildings and garden. The exhibition on “Hanoi, oldest school” was really informative.
ซื้อตั๋วได้ที่ข้างหน้าประตู ราคาคนละ 70K VND มีสถานที่ยังสมบูรณ์ และมีประวัติเกี่ยวกับสถานที่นี้ละเอียดมาก หากไม่ได้ซื้อแบบ audio บรรยายก็สามารถอ่านเรื่องราวต่างๆได้ตามป้าย หรือจุดที่มห้ความรู้ต่างๆ เข้าไปด้านในจะมีขงจื้อให้ไหว้ขอพรด้วย หากเหนื่อยมีตู้กดน้ำขายก่อนถึงประตูทางออก (น้ำเปล่าราคาถูกกว่าร้านทั่วไป 5K VND) ทางออกจะอยู่ทางด้านขวามือ
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Really lovely temple and great information. Would recommend!
A walk through history of the Dynastys of Vietnam
Beautiful and must visit place
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Un imprescindible de Hanoi. La primera universidad de Hanoi basada en la sabiduría de Confucio. Con cuatro jardines alineados, el último completamente destruido por los franceses durante un bombardeo a la ciudad. Las losas que se encuentran en el tercer jardín son reconstruidas en su mayoría y están dedicadas a los Cum Laude, solo 2.000 alumnos lo consiguieron durante más de 1.000 años de historia académica. Tienen también una colección de bonsái impresionante. Muy recomendable
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The Temple of Literature in Hanoi is a cultural marvel that beckons visitors with its rich history and architectural splendor. Serving as Vietnam's first university, it encapsulates centuries of academic and spiritual significance. The well-preserved structures within the complex, including the Van Mieu and the Quoc Tu Giam, exude an aura of serenity and scholarly pursuit. The traditional Vietnamese architecture, with its intricate details and picturesque courtyards, creates a tranquil environment that transports visitors back to a bygone era of academia and wisdom. Wandering through the myriad pathways of the Temple of Literature, one encounters stelae inscribed with the names of exceptional scholars, embodying a tangible connection to the past. The serene ambiance is heightened by the presence of beautiful gardens and ancient trees, providing a contemplative space for reflection. The altars dedicated to Confucius and his disciples add a spiritual dimension, underscoring the temple's dual role as an educational institution and a place of reverence. As the first university in Vietnam, the Temple of Literature stands as a testament to the country's commitment to education and intellectual pursuits. The combination of historical significance, architectural elegance, and cultural resonance makes it a must-visit destination for those seeking a profound glimpse into Vietnam's academic heritage and the enduring legacy of Confucian philosophy.
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The best ancient Chinese architecture I found here in Hanoi!
Nice historical authentic place
Rất hay và ý nghĩa
photoreview-Ánh Hoàng-0
Văn Miếu lưu giữ nhiều giá trị về xuyên suốt chiều dài lịch sử từ thời vua Lý Thái Tổ dời đô về Thăng Long
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Vé vào cổng không có hướng dẫn viên là 30k. Rất đông du khách tới viếng và chụp ảnh. Cồng ra là phía bên hổng bên phải nhé mọi người. Lần đầu vào đi tìm hơi lâu đó ạ. Khá nhiều view đẹp để check in. Các bạn nào đang còn đi học đừng quên ghé thắp nhang nhé ! Chúc các bạn vui vẻ !
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Văn Miếu với sự chuyển mình mạnh mẽ để hợp thời đại hơn, luôn có rất nhiều sự kiện mới thú vị được tổ chức hàng tháng. Không chỉ ban ngày, Văn Miếu đêm cũng có 1 vẻ đẹp rất khác lạ, hãy đến và trải nghiệm?
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Địa điểm nên đến khi thăm Hà Nội.
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Magnifique temple très grand !!!
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Beautiful architecture. Something you MUST see if you visit Vietnam. cheap tickets will get you a nice visit. worth spending over 30 minutes, so the price is convenient.
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Magnifique et pause reposante dans l effervescence d Hanoi
Visited April 2011 Literally Vietnamese translation is Temple of Literature, although a more accurate name should be Temple of Confucius. This is a temple dedicated to Confucius in Hanoi, northern Vietnam. The temple was built in 1070 at the time of Emperor Lý Thánh Tông, and it hosted the Imperial Academy, Vietnam's first national university, from 1076 to 1779. The Văn Miếu is one of several temples in Vietnam which is dedicated to Confucius, sages, and scholars. The temple is located to the south of the Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long. The various pavilions, halls, statues, and stelae of doctors are places where offering ceremonies, study sessions, and the strict exams of the Đại Việt took place. The temple is featured on the back of the 100,000 Vietnamese đồng banknote. Just before the Tết Vietnamese New Year celebration, calligraphists will assemble outside the temple and write wishes in Chữ Hán. The art works are given away as gifts or are used as home decorations for special occasions.
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Lovely grounds, well restored, neat, clean and peaceful! A must do if you have the time!
Beautiful, peaceful place. Oasis in Hanoi chaos. Definitely must see! Entry 30k VND. You can spend there whole day.
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Ngày mùa Hà Nội
Đến nhiều lần rùi nhưng mà lần này là để thử trải nghiệm tour đêm. Ánh sáng lung linh huyền ảo, âm thanh dễ chịu, kết hợp với các ứng dụng trải nghiệm thực tế như VR làm tour rất thú vị và sinh động. Phần ánh sáng 3D được mong chờ nhất, cùng dàn nhạc đỉnh cao. Tuy nhiên diễn ra hơi ngắn, và nên có thuyết minh, lồng ghép câu chuyện or ý nghĩa gì đó vào thì sẽ hấp dẫn hơn. P/S: Bổ sung một số ảnh ban ngày
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Kiến trúc tuyệt đẹp, ghi chú lịch sử rõ ràng tuy nhiên cần đơn giản hoá để trẻ em 5-10 tuổi hiểu được giá trị của Văn Miếu.
This is a really nice temple complex in the heart of the city. Well worth visiting if you're a tourist. They have a small art exhibition and art workshops.
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A place to visit meaningful cultural history

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