Can Tho is not only famous for its floating markets and gardens, but also for its beautiful, ancient and extremely sacred pagodas. If anyone has the opportunity to travel to Can Tho, they will definitely be recommended to visit Munir Ansay Pagoda. This is a large Khmer pagoda with the most unique and oldest architecture in Mekong Delta. Therefore, this place has long become an indispensable destination when returning to Tay Do, helping tourists understand more about the culture of the Khmer ethnic people.

General information about Munir Ansay Pagoda

Munir Ansay Pagoda is located at 36 Hoa Binh Avenue, Ninh Kieu District – a busy and beautiful street of Can Tho city. This Khmer Pagoda was started construction in 1948 on a busy and bustling street in Can Tho city. At that time, pagoda was only built with very simple materials such as bamboo and cork. After many restorations and renovations, the pagoda has the majestic and vast appearance it has today.

Munir Ansay Pagoda

Munir Ansay Pagoda is also known as Munisenray Pagoda which in Khmer means bright pearl, meaning the beautiful and sacred of the pagoda.

What is attractive about Munir Ansay Pagoda in Can Tho city?

Coming to Munir Ansay, visitors will see a pagoda with Cambodian “Angkor” style architecture, built with many different items. The main structure include the main hall, the living area for monks, the kitchen, the reception hall, the tower to keep the ashes of the predecessor, the Xa Loi tower and the main gate which is elaborately carved according to the way of worshiping the gods of the Khmer people. 

The main gate is built in the shape of a three-jewel tower, three towers located parallel on the gate stand tall in the air, helping visitors feel the solemnity of the place of worship.

Munir Ansay Pagoda

The main gate

Looking from the outside, on the left is a row of houses for monks, on the right is a hall to welcome guests and eat meals, and in the middle of the pagoda is a 2-story main hall, in front of the main hall is a tower holding Buddha’s relics.

Munir Ansay Pagoda

The grounds of Munir Ansay Pagoda from the outside looking in

As soon as you set foot at the pagoda gate, the stands out in a bright yellow color, symbolizing luck and prosperity will show up. This is the traditional color often decorated in Khmer pagodas in the Mekong Delta.

Although located in the city center, the yard is quite airy, spacious and peaceful. From the gate, visitors will see a splendid yellow stupa standing tall in the middle of the yard like a screen protecting the main hall area. Around the stupa are embossed reliefs of the Three Jewels, a statue of the goddess Keynor, a statue of the Kurdish bird, a four-faced Buddha statue…

Munir Ansay Pagoda

Behind the stupa is a staircase leading to the main hall area. Like other Khmer pagodas, the main hall always faces east because according to Buddhism, the east is the direction of the gods. This area is built high, more than 1 meter above the ground, so it is very airy and clean.

Munir Ansay Pagoda

Around the main hall is decorated with many embossed reliefs, round statues, carvings, representing the images of Reahu, Fairy, god bird Kâyno, Chan Yeak… making the outside of the main hall when looks so gorgeous.

Munir Ansay Pagoda

Looking at this layer of decorative images, one can easily recognize the characteristics of folk beliefs and Brahmanism – which are beliefs and religions that precede Buddhism in the spiritual life of the Khmer people.

Munir Ansay Pagoda
Looking at this layer of decorative images, one can easily recognize the characteristics of folk beliefs and Brahmanism – which are beliefs and religions that precede Buddhism in the spiritual life of the Khmer people.

The pagoda worships only one Buddha Shakyamuni. Therefore, the main hall is decorated quite simply, the altar is divided into many levels.

Munir Ansay Pagoda

Statue of Shakyamuni Buddha

The statue of Sakyamuni Buddha is also beautifully cast, carved, and engraved in many standing, lying, and sitting positions. That is to show the diversity and richness of the moral meaning and beauty of Shakyamuni Buddha. The main hall is also the place to store the precious wealth of the pagoda and people’s offerings.

Explore traditional festivals of Khmer

This sacred Khmer pagoda is a place of worship that attracts a large number of tourists to the beautiful city of the province. Not only does it stand out with its unique design style, the pagoda is also a pioneer in preserving the traditional identity of the Khmer people.

Clothing Offering Ceremony

Every year, at Munir Ansay Pagoda, major holidays are held such as Cholchonam Thomay – New Year (March 13, 14, 15 of the lunar calendar), Ok-om-Book – moon worship ceremony (October of the lunar calendar) , Donta – Ancestor worship ceremony (8th lunar month), Khmer people’s Clothing Offering Ceremony… The ceremony is held joyfully and solemnly, with many local folk games, enriching cultural life spirit of the Khmer people in particular and the people of Can Tho city in general.

In addition to spiritual activities, Munir Ansay Pagoda is also a place to organize cultural activities such as painting exhibitions, performances and classes on Buddhism. This helps tourists learn more deeply about Buddhism and is also a way to interact and exchange cultures between countries.

Source: collected by An

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