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Vinh Nghiem Pagoda

Completed with aid from the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Association in 1971, this is, by some measures, the largest pagoda in the city. Certainly, its eight-story tower, located immediately to the left of a high gate, is the tallest.  Each side of the tower is adorned with an image of the Buddha in high relief. To the right of the gate is a smaller, 5-m high tower, built of concrete blocks. The concrete is of such high quality and color that the structure appears to be made of granite.

Across a 20-m courtyard is the large, squat main building. A steep staircase leads up to the sanctuary where five massive lacquer ware doors lead into the vast first room. The walls here are lined with well-executed paintings of scriptural scenes and explanatory note are posted alongside. Farther in is the main altar with a huge, seated Buddha, flanked by disciples.

Behind the sanctuary lies a solemn room, filled with photographs and memorials to the departed. Quan Am, the Goddess of Mercy, presides from her altar here.

On the second floor, a cloister leads into an art gallery where local artists show their works. Rocks and topiary gardens flank the building.


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