Tam Son Hoi Quan Pagoda

Tam Son Hoi Quan is a quiet pagoda located on a small street. The interior is loaded with beautiful ornamental figures, so bring your camera. The temple was built in the 19th Century by the Fujian Congregation in Cho Lon, Saigon's Chinatown. You may wonder why most of the visitors to the temple are women. It is because the pagoda is dedicated to Me Sanh, or Mother Sanh, the fertility goddess. The women have come to the Tam Son Hoi Quan in hopes of conceiving a child.

Built by the Fujian Congregation of Saigon in 1839, Tam Son Hoi Quan Pagoda has thankfully retained its rich ornamentation. The Cho Lon-located pagoda is dedicated to Mother Sanh, the Goddess of Fertility, and is popular with women praying for conception. The worshippers congregate in front of Mother Sanh's altar at the back of the temple.

When you're in Cho Lon area in District 5, the Chinatown of Saigon, make sure to stop by the pagoda. You can read all our reviews about religious sights in Ho Chi Minh City: Temples and Pagodas.

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Photo Story: Pagoda Charm

Vietnam is famous for its religious diversity, which includes Caodaism, Christianity, Islam, Taoism and Confucianism. If there is one religion that stands out from the rest, however, it’s Buddhism – and the pagodas have a lot to do with it.

It’d be impossible to completely understand Vietnamese culture without visiting these spiritual spots and getting a closer look at Vietnamese Buddhism’s deeply-ingrained spiritual traditions. The smell of incense lingers in the air, the dark colours creates a mysterious ambience and the numerous historical figures encapsulated in the intricately carved wall friezes make pagodas a truly special place to worship.

While temples (‘Đền) are used to worship emperors or national heroes, pagodas (Chùa) are exclusively reserved for worshiping Buddha. Throughout Vietnam, visitors will find hundreds of pagodas reflecting the historical Chinese influence through their ornamentation and architectural design (three entrance gates, bell tower, garden courtyards with bonsais, etc.).

We headed out to District 11 to visit two pagodas (Chùa Phụng Sơn and Chùa Khánh Vân Nam Viện) that have remained untouched over the years, showcasing both authenticity and tradition in equal shares.

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