Photo: A section of My Son.

My Son

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Quang Nam's efforts to market My Son sanctuary as the "Angkor of Vietnam" are a little misguided, but that's not to say it isn't well worth seeing. Those who make the trip expecting to see a vast well-preserved city on par with the incomparable Angkor Wat will be disappointed. However, as the religious and political capital of the Champa Kingdom, it is one of the most significant Cham sites in Vietnam.

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Drawing spiritually from Hinduism, the Cham built temples to honour Hindu divinities with fired brick, stone pillars and sandstone bas-reliefs. My Son was initially constructed in the late 4th century, built by King Bhadravarman for the god Shiva (the creator, destroyer and preserver). From then on the temples were continuously developed until the 13th century.

It can be beautiful ... Photo taken in or around My Son, Hoi An, Vietnam by Cindy Fan.

It can be beautiful ... Photo: Cindy Fan

My Son sanctuary became known to the western world in 1885, when French architect, archaeologist and art historian Henri Parmentier (1870-1949) and his colleagues began excavating and documenting the site. They found 72 monuments within a semi-circular, two-kilometre wide valley. Though what you see today are groups of towers simply dotted throughout the forest, the construction of a temple was based on precise holy ritual and imbued ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 500 words.)


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