THE RISE OF AFTER-TET PILGRIMAGE TOURS
Immediately after Tet, demand for pilgrimage and pagoda tours inside and outside the country rises highly. In accordance with general assessment, the number of tourists participated in pilgrimage tours after Tet accounts for more than 40% of total booked tourists and it is forecasted to have a sudden rise in these tours due to festivals in Yen Tu, Bai Dinh and demand for discovering beauty spots and festivals in heritage lands in the Central Region and Southern region.
For the Vietnamese people, there are many important holidays in which the fifteenth of Lunar January after Tet is the time for the tourists to participate in pilgrimage tours.
Ms. Sen – a small clothing trader in Tan Dinh market (district 1, HCMC) shared that “being a trader, I concern much about the first pilgrimage tour at the beginning of the year because this is the occasion to find the peacefulness and spray for a lucky business year. Therefore, although very busy, my friends and I often go to burn incenses and spray for good lucks at pagodas in the city, Binh Duong, Dong Nai, if we have more time, we will go farther to the Central Region and this year, I choose the North to discover the culture and go to the churches there”.
In order to not worry about service price in the peak season, you should register for packaged tour because you do not have to worry about meals, accommodation and only concentrate on your first pilgrimage. Many people think that self-organized tour will be cheaper but actually many of them have to reconsider when the actual quality is not ensured and the price is high.
At Vietravel, although pilgrimage tours for 2013 have just newly introduced but they are concerned and responded actively. The outstanding features of these tours are discount up to 3 million VND, 3-4-star hotel services and weekly departure, duration of from 2-6 days which meet demands of every tourists.
With the Northern Region Pilgrimage tours: “Hanoi – Yen Tu – Ha Long – Sapa – Do Temple” with price VND 11.09 million, Departure: every Thursday; “Hanoi – Yen Tu - Titop Island – Sung Sot Cave – Bai Dinh – Trang An” (4 days) with price of from VND7.99 million, departure: every Saturdays etc. the tourists will not only receive a discount of 3 million VND but also enjoy the wonderful beauty of the Spring in the North. Yen Tu Conquer Tour in the early Spring will be only the tour to travel to pristine nature with mountain winds and clouds but also an “impermanence” experience to the human realm. That maybe the season why the Buddha Tran Nhan Tong got rid of everything to take refuge in the Buddha.
Owning many recorded religious works, Bai Dinh pagoda is the place selected by many tourists for their pilgrimages on the first days of the year. Here, the tourists will not only worship the great statues but also meet a lot of good luck when worshiping for good fortunes at this famous pagoda.
Central Region tours with discount of 3 million VND: “Da Nang – Ba Na – Hoi An – Hue – Phong Nha” (4 days) with the price from 5.79 million VND, departure: every Thursday; “Da Nang – Lang Co – Hue – Thien Duong Cave – Ba Na – Hoi An” (5 days) with the price of from VND6.79 million VND/person, departure: Every Wednesday, Saturday etc. are for those who love to recollect things in the past and mossy architectural works. The tour to discover Tam Thai Pagoda, Linh Ung Non Nuoc Pagoda and Bai But beach or set the mind undisturbed to listen to the sound of Thien Mu pagoda bell, spray for good fortune at Hoi An Ancient Temple or Cau Pagoda etc. is the spiritual journey of memories and emotions.
Down in the South, it can not miss Ba Chua Xu Chau Doc Temple and Tay An Co Tu – the important pilgrimage place of An Giang priovince and neigbouring areas. Especially, Cam Mountain Tourism Area with wonderful pagodas located between wonderful mountains and water areas such as Van Linh pagoda, Phat Lon pagoda or the biggest Di Lac Buddha Statue in the Southeast Asia is an unique destination that Vietravel would like to offer the tourists in this spring. There you will have chance to enjoying the pagoda sceneries while enjoying delicious foods of Bay Nui region such as: Thot Lot fruit, beef sausage, fish noodles, chicken steamed with truc leaves, Mam Thai etc. Depending on your time, you can choose the following tours: “Chau Doc – Ha Tien – Rach Gia – Can Tho” Tour (4 days) with the price of VND3.09 million/tourist, depature: Every Thursday; “Chau Doc – Ha Tien – Kampot - Sihanouk Ville – Bokor Highlands” Tour (4 days) with the price of VND3.99 million/tourist (already discount 30%), departure: 7, 21/3’ “Chau Doc – Cai Be Village – Ba Pagoda – Cam Mountain” (2 days) with the price of VND1.35 million/tourist, departure: 24/2, 26/3.
However, this is the pilgrimage season, the pilgrims are very crowded, you are highly recommended by Vietravel the followings to have a successful tour as expected. Due to you have to walk and climb mountains, you should wear soft and anti-slip shoes to avoid sliding. You should wear comfortable, sweat-absorbent, polite, discreet clothes to suit with the background of temples and pagodas. You should be careful when hiring personnel belongings carrying services and when decided to use these services, you should accompany closely to avoid theft. Only use the services provided by those who wears the cards licensed by the Management Board. For peddling services, you should resolutely refuse if you do not want to buy the goods to avoid being followed.
In the temple campus, do not exchange for small money when you are invited because you will have to pay fee for this. It is best to prepare small money at home to put in donation boxes. It is strictly forbidden to take photos at worshipping places, Buddha statues. After Tet is the time when many people visit these places, so you are recommended to not bring big bags. Bring small bag for foods and put in the front, do not put behind because it will be easily stolen. For tourists who are on vegetarian, you should add milk to your meals to ensure the health. The elderly and children should limit climbing activities.
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