Ba Den Pagoda (Linh Son Tien Thach Tu) is a 300-year old temple built on Ba Den Mountain in Tay Ninh Province. Located about 110 miles from Ho Chi Minh City, the mountain and temple are popular tourist destinations.
Many international sightseers make an effort to visit the pagoda during the Lunar New Year to pray for wealth and prosperity for the following year. On top of the mountain is also a giant statue of Buddha Lady, standing at 72 meters tall and cast with more than 170 tons of bronze.
Also known as, Chùa Bà Đen – Pagoda of the Black Lady, Ba Den Pagoda’s real name is Tien Thach tu pagoda of the Immortal in stone.
History of Chua Ba Den
The primary portion of Ba Den Pagoda is a five-meter cave with a shrine to the goddess Ba Den. Legend has it that she appeared to the late Emperor Nguyen Anh while hiding from an enemy in the mountain and appeared in his dreams to guide him towards fruit. Years later, the emperor ordered that a pagoda be placed there, so construction began.
Beside the original stone cave is a newer shrine built in 1996 and houses statues of Bodhisattvas, which many visitors touch for good luck.
Visiting Ba Den Pagoda
Ba Den Mountain, also known as “Black Virgin Mountain”, is regarded as a highly sacred place that attracts a lot of spiritual seekers. For that reason, many visitors and pilgrims opt to climb the 1,500 stairs to the pagoda, which takes more than an hour from the foot of the mountain.
Others who don’t wish to make the climb themselves can take the Chua Ba cable car to the top, offering a 10-minute ride with beautiful panoramic scenery of Tay Ninh’s area. In recent years, the grounds around the pagoda have added more structures to appeal to tourists, like a restaurant with as many as 80 different menu items showcasing the region’s cuisine.
The natural scenery is stunning, too, with a “European corner” that features a windmill and about 100,000 potted flowers.
Address: Thạnh Tân, Tây Ninh, Tây Ninh Province
Hours: 24 hours