Châu Thới Pagoda is not only an ancient temple marking the formation and development of Northern Buddhism in the Southeast region but also a famous scenic spot of Bình Dương province. The full name Châu Thới Mountain Pagoda (Vietnamese: Châu Thới Sơn Tự), this is the oldest pagoda in the Southeast of Vietnam. It’s located on Châu Thới mountain (Bình An ward, Dĩ An town, Bình Dương province). The mountain is 82m high, with an area of about 25ha, located on a large plain.
According to history, Châu Thới pagoda was built in 1612 by Zen master Khánh Long. The temple is associated with the history of the migration of Vietnamese people in the South. During the two resistance wars against the French and Americans, the pagoda became the refuge and activity of revolutionary cadres and soldiers.
After more than 400 years, under the impact of natural disasters and wars, the pagoda is still intact with a diverse architectural complex built at different times, including the main hall and shrines… The temple’s ancestral house and lecture hall were restored in 1930. From 1971 to 1993, the pagoda was built with 220 more steps leading to the pagoda.
The highlight of the architectural decoration of the pagoda is the 9 large dragons covered with multi-colored ceramic pieces, placed around the pagoda and towards the sides. In the temple, there are still many paintings, statues, legal instruments, valuable worshiping objects, and the terracotta set of the Eighteen Arhats and the Ten Palaces of Hell. These are two unique sets of statues, showing that the local pottery profession has developed very early. In addition, the pagoda also preserves three stone Buddha statues dating to the late seventeenth century, and a wooden Guanyin statue of an ancient jackfruit tree planted in the temple garden.
Châu Thới Pagoda is a scenic spot, a spiritual area that always attracts tourists from all over the world. This place is very convenient for tourists to combine visiting other destinations such as Tam Bảm Pagoda, Lồ Ô stream, Bửu Long mountain (Biên Hòa city, Đồng Nai province). On the 1st and the full moon day, especially during the New Year holiday, tourists from all over the world, travel to Vietnam, gather here in large numbers to worship and pray for peace. With historical, cultural, and architectural values, in 1989 Châu Thới pagoda was recognized as a national historical, cultural, and scenic relic.