Guidebook Go to the Temple City of My Son

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Go to the Temple City of My Son

“These monuments are dramatically unique,” says Nomadasaurus. and as such are somewhere that should not be skipped from your Southeast Asia itinerary. A UNESCO World Heritage Site for its historical and culture significance, located 40km from Hoi An, the Champa city of My Son was “an important complex that was occupied from the 4th to the 13th centuries.”

This is how UNESCO explains the significance of My Son:

“The tower temples were constructed over ten centuries of continuous development in what was the heart of the ancestral homeland of the ruling Dua Clan which unified the Cham clans and established the kingdom of Champapura (Sanskrit for City of the Cham people) in 192 CE. During the 4th to 13th centuries CE this unique culture, on the coast of contemporary Viet Nam, owed its spiritual origins to the Hinduism of the Indian sub-continent. Under this influence many temples were built to the Hindu divinities such as Krishna and Vishnu, but above all Shiva. Although Mahayan Buddhist penetrated the Cham culture, probably from the 4thcentury CE, and became strongly established in the north of the kingdom, Shivite Hinduism remained the established state religion.”

The American War did “great damage” to the complex, explains Vietnam Guide -- “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.” Fortunately, the majority of the central complex managed to survive the bombs and parts of the ruins have now been rebuilt. “This Hindu sanctuary reminds visitors of other similar sites in Southeast Asia including the great Angkor Wat in Cambodia, making it a “must-visit for those who appreciate history.”

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