Giong Soc Son Festival (Soc Son Temple Festival)

Vietnam festivals - Giong Soc Son festivalTime: From the 6th to the 8th day of the first lunar month. The main festive day is on the 7th day.
Place: Phu Linh Commune, Soc Son District, Hanoi.
Objects of worship: Saint Giong.
Characteristics: Fighting for bamboo flowers and cut the General of Yin invaders.

The Soc Son temple is situated in Ve Linh village, Phu Linh commune which belongs to Soc Son district, a suburban district of Hanoi. The temple is dedicated to the Giong God, Phu GiongThien Vuong.

Starting from Hanoi one can go to Ve Linh village by following Highway No 1, crossing Chuong Duong and Duong bridges, then turning left and following Highway No 3, crossing Phu Lo bridge and on reaching Ma market (located at kilometre 29 of the same highway), turning left again.

The Soc Son temple is surrounded by mountains: Cao Tung to the south, Cam to the east, Co Ngua to the west, and the Rua, an area of flat land to the south-east. In the ancient past, these mountains were covered with thick forests. The area is also watered by two rivers: one flowing from the north-west to the south-east, the other from the west to the south.

It is said that Soc Son was the final place Saint Giong took a rest before returning to Heaven. The festival organizes every year in commemorating the day that the legend hero took off his armour and flew to heaven. It involves an incense offering ceremony, Saint’s statue bathing ceremony, a bamboo flowers offerring (symbolize for riding-whip of the Saint) is on the 7th day (the main festive day), then thowing them, then people strive them for lucky. Cutting general ceremony symbolize for the action that Saint Giong cut the General of Yin invaders.

On the 8th day holding gia dam (ending) ceremony. Games in the festival: fighting cock, playing Chinese chess, swinging, ca tru singing to worship gods.

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