Ngoc Son Temple
( Jade Mountain Temple) is located on Ngoc Son Island (first called Tuong Nhi or Elephant Ears in English) at the northern end of Hoan Kiem Lake
The temple supposedly dates back to the fourteenth century, although the current buildings were probably built in the eighteenth century. The temple is dedicated to the hero Tran Hung Dao, who defeated a force of 300,000 sent to invade Vietnam by the Mongol Emperor. There are also altars dedicated to the scholars Van Xuong and La To, the patron saint of physicians.
The Temple is a combination of Pen Tower, Doc Ton Mountain, Ink Slab, Huc Bridge and Ngoc Son Temple. Pen Tower is five floors one built in 18th century as the idea of Nguyen Van Sieu who followed Confucianism. Visitors on the other hand will be impressed by its meaning: The Pen Tower is the symbol for Vietnamese desire for knowledge, there was not enough paper to text our knowledge, and we had to take the large sky as a big book which was so high that no one could steal. Moreover, Doc Ton Mountain and Pen Tower support each other when the mountain makes the Pen higher and the Pen also helps the other handed down forever.
Pen Tower is the symbol of Vietnamese desire for knowledge
As a highlight, Huc Bridge (Rising Sun) is a red-painted one representing happiness and preventing ghosts into the Temple. In front of the Temple is Tran Ba Dinh – a communal house in order to hold back water and other evil spirits.
The Huc Bridge
Ngoc Son Temple consists of the great ceremonial hall, the main hall worshiping Van Xuong- a great scholar of Vietnam and the back hall dedicating to King Tran Hung Dao.
The Front Hall
The combination between Ngoc Son Temple and Hoan Kiem Lake brings an integrated and ancient beauty and the feeling of relaxing to everyone coming here. It becomes the witness to recall the memories of the nation, wakening national pride of each Vietnamese.