vietnam travel covid 19 updates

Stay updated with the latest news of the COVID-19 situation in Vietnam and information for traveling to Vietnam. Read more here.

Vietnam Travel Information

i Tour Vietnam | Top-rated private Ho Chi Minh City tours and Vietnam travel guides.

Ong Pagoda - Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5

Nghia-An-Assembly-Hall-in-District-5

Ho Chi Minh City is considered as a cosmopolitan city since it is a combination many cultures. In particular, the most prominent is the development of the Chinese community, especially Trieu Chau people (Chaozhou). For over 100 years, ethnic Chinese brought along their cultural heritage from their fatherland to Southern Vietnam, in which General Quan Cong is considered to be one of the most distinctive characters of the Chinese spiritual culture. In Ho Chi Minh City, Quan Cong is dedicated in several places, including Ong Pagoda. The Ong Pagoda is also known as Quan De Shrine, Nghia an Assembly Hall.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 quan cong picture

A picture of Quan Cong carved in the gate of Ong Pagoda

Address of the Nghia An Assembly Hall

676-678 Nguyen Trai, Ward 11, District 5

Opening hours of the Nghia An Assembly Hall

8:30 AM - 5 PM

There is a primary school next to the pagoda. Therefore, if you come to the Ong Pagoda at around 4 PM, this place might be more crowded and busy with students and their parents. We recommend visiting before 4 PM to fully experience the beauty as well as the solemnity of the religious place.

Entrance fee of the Nghia An Assembly Hall

Free, VND 5,000 for motorbike parking

How to get to the Nghia An Assembly Hall

Located about 5.5 kilometers from Ben Thanh Market, Ong Pagoda is accessible by car, bus (route 01 from Ben Thanh Market) or motorbike. It takes about 20 minutes to 30 minutes depending on your choice of transportation.

History of the Nghia An Assembly Hall

Nghia An (Yian) is the name of a land in Guangdong, China, where the majority of Chaozhou people live. Since the immigration, this place has been where many Chaozhou gather, and thus, it is called Nghia An Assembly Hall. However, this temple is often referred to by the name of Ong Pagoda by locals because Ong means Quan Cong, to whom the pagoda is dedicated.

It is unclear when the temple was built, according to some historical materials, it is probably around the late nineteenth century by Chinese from Yian (Nghia An). Letters sculptured on the wall indicate that the temple was restored in 1866, 1901, 1966, and 1984. The latest restoration was in 2010.

Although many things have been restored, architectural and artifacts such as pairs of couplet on wooden panels, paintings, sculptures in the temple are well preserved, reflecting a unique ancient culture of Trieu Chau. People here also worship other deities such as Thien Hau, Phuoc Duc, Van Xuong, and Ma Dau General. The careful conservation of the relics has contributed to attracting a large number of people, including domestic and foreign tourists.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 1

Stepping through the big entrance, you will feel the absolute quietness and calmness, especially in the morning

The Legend of Quan Cong

Quan Cong (also called Quan De or Quan Vu) is one of the most well-known Chinese historical figures in East Asia. He was a general serving under Tao Thao and Luu Bi, two of the main leaders in the ancient Chinese civil war known as the Three Kingdoms. His image was not only fictionalized in dramas, TV series, and other traditional forms of art like Chinese opera but also deified in folk tales, starting from the Sui Dynasty (581-618).

He is worshiped in many places, especially in Hong Kong. His statues are featured with a red face, long beard, holding in his hand a horse harness or his precious sword which is believed to weigh about 50 kilograms. Quan Cong is considered as a symbol of generosity and loyalty, but historians also criticize him for his arrogance.

Structure of Nghia An Assembly Hall

As the majority of the Chinese temples, Ong Pagoda has the overall architectural shape like the letter Khau (囗) or Quoc (国), meaning mouth or nation in English, which is a closed rectangle with a space in the middle. In general, the temple's structure shows clearly the architecture and decoration of the Trieu Chau (Chaozhou).

The Outside of Nghia An Assembly Hall

The gates with elaborate grillwork and a large carved decorative wall make the temple stand apart from the busy street outside. Moreover, Ong Pagoda sits on a large piece of property, and thus, does not seem cramped like many other attractions in Cho Lon, the Chinatown in Ho Chi Minh City.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 entrance

The entrance of Ong Pagoda on Nguyen Trai Street

The whole pagoda is divided into two main parts. The first one is the courtyard which is extremely large. In fact, this yard is nearly two thousand square meters, accounting for more than half of the whole area. There is a big lake in the yard where people usually gather to liberate fishes to save their lives.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 courtyard 1

The very large courtyard in front of Ong Pagoda

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 courtyard 2

A very large sculpture in the courtyard

The rest are skylight area, incense house, front hall, main hall, and two offices located on two sides of the pagoda. The Chinese style is expressed through the design, statues, ceramic embossments on the red tile roof, reverse carved flowers and unicorns.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 office 2

An office in Ong Pagoda

Ong Pagoda roof has 3 levels: the highest is in the middle while the lower is on two sides. On top of the roof, there are statues of two dragons fighting for a big red pearl.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 roof

The decorated tile roof of Ong Pagoda is a unique feature of this place as well as Trieu Chau architecture

From the large entrance to the temple gate, there are five large pairs of stone unicorn placed symmetrically. The most beautiful is probably the pair of unicorn statues on two sides of the door. Above is the label "Nghia An Assembly Hall", which was created in 1903. On the front wall of the pagoda, there are carvings of Chinese characters and six different carving pictures of bamboo.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 picture of bamboo

Two of six pictures of bamboo carved on the wall

The Inside of Nghia An Assembly Hall

The inner design is decorated with elaborate shrines and high wooden posts carved with the couplet pairs. Many exquisite engravings which indicate objects from the Chinese legend like the four mythical creatures like dragon, unicorn, turtle, and phoenix to the daily life symbols such as water and firewood.

From the main entrance, you will see the front hall first, then the skylight, incense house, and last but not least, the main hall.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 grillwork copy

A skillful grillwork at the gate leading to the front hall

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 front hall ceiling

Special ceiling woodwork in the front hall

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 Ma Dau General

Passing through the gate, the statue of Ma Dau General is on your right side

On the right of the front hall is the statue of Ma Dau General, who held the Red Horse for Quan Cong. The Red Horse is painted red and over 2-meter high. It is considered to be one of the most beautiful statues of the Red Horse.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 main hall tho dia

The statue of Tho Dia on the left side

On the left of the front hall is the altar of Phuc Duc (also known as Tho Dia or Ong Bon, meaning the god of earth and land).

The skylight area is located between the front hall and the incense house, which make the whole space much brighter and let out the smoke of incense.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 skylight 1

The skylight area is very spacious

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 skylight 2

This area is decorated with many beautiful lanterns hanging inline around the skylight area and the gates

The incense burner in the middle is made in 1825. This is 39-cm high, 46-cm wide, the two sides are embossed with two heads of unicorns, the front has the words "Quan Thanh De Quan". Many people come here, light three sticks of incense and pray good things for themselves and their families. The number three involves an Eastern philosophical conception of the universe: Thien (Sky), Nhan (Man), Dia (Land), called the three resources (Tam Tai). Moreover, this number is also related to the "Luong long trieu nguyet", twin dragons on the moon, which are usually decorated on censers and in places of worship.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 incense house

The incense house inside Ong Pagoda

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 incense house label

Chinese characters are carved on gold wooden labels in the incense house

The main hall was designed solemnly with statues of Quan Cong in the middle, beside him are the god of fortune (Than Tai) and Thien Hau, who is worshiped in another temple in Cho Lon.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 main hall

The main hall is the most important part of the Ong Pagoda

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 main hall thien hau

The statue of Thien Hau on the right side of the main hall

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 main hall than tai

The statue of Than Tai on the left side of the main hall

The 3-meter high Quan Cong statue is also described with details that have become conventional: a red face, wearing armor and green brocade, sitting on a throne. On his sides, there are two two-meter high statues of his soldiers standing in front of the altar, named Quan Binh and Chau Xuong.

Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5 main hall quan cong

A closer look at Quan Cong, Quan Binh, and Chau Xuong in the main hall

Summary on Nghia An Assembly Hall in District 5

The architecture and design at Ong Pagoda are impressive because of the exquisite gilded woodwork and unique design featured Trieu Chau culture. If you want to experience Trieu Chau culture in Ho Chi Minh City, Ong Pagoda is definitely worth the visit.

Besides Ong Pagoda, there are other famous temples and pagodas around Ho Chi Minh City, you can read more about them here.

Check out our authentic motorbike tours with professional local guides
for fun trips in Ho Chi Minh City!

family outing in ho chi minh city motorcycle

172
 

Comments

No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Already Registered? Login Here
Guest
Sunday, 17 October 2021

Captcha Image

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to https://www.itourvn.com/

 

About itourvn.com

This Vietnam travel information page is written by a team of professional tour guides in Vietnam. More about us or visit home page

Private Ho Chi Minh Tours

private ho chi minh tours

All tours are private, customizable, and led by professional English-speaking guides. For more reference, read our customer reviews or see below for the tour package in Ho Chi Minh that works for you.

Half-day City Tour

Night Tour

Food Tour

Saigon's Other Side

Shore Excursions

Vietnam Travel Information

Check out the necessary information for traveling to Vietnam

First Time in Vietnam

To Pack List for Vietnam

Vietnam Travel Adaptors

Major Cities in Vietnam

Family & Elderly Travel

LGBT Travel

Vietnam Festivals and Holidays

Best Vietnamese Dishes

UNESCO World Heritage in Vietnam

Responsible Travel in Vietnam

Vietnamese Culture

Religions in Vietnam

Ethnicities in Vietnam

Tipping in Vietnam

Vietnamese Currency Guide

Best Dishes to Try in Vietnam

20 Must-try Vietnamese Dishes

Unusual Foods to Try in Vietnam

Street Food in Vietnam

Vietnamese Grilled Dishes

Rice Dishes in Vietnam

Pho Dishes in Vietnam

Holiday Dishes to Try during Tet Holiday

Chinese Dishes in Vietnam

Dishes to Try in Northern Vietnam

Dishes to Try in Central Vietnam

Dishes to Try in Southern Vietnam

What to Eat in Ho Chi Minh City

What to Eat in Hanoi

What to Eat in Hue

What to Eat in Hoi An

What to Eat in Da Lat

What to Eat in the Mekong Delta

Traveling to and within Vietnam

Airport Arrival Tips at Tan Son Nhat International Airport (Ho Chi Minh)

Airport Arrival Tips at Noi Bai International Airport (Hanoi)

Major Airports in Vietnam

Taking Trains in Vietnam

Bringing your Motorbikes on Trains in Vietnam

Bringing Your Own Vehicles to Vietnam

Bringing Your Pets to Vietnam

How to Take Motorbike Taxis

Taking a Ferry in Vietnam

Renting a Car in Vietnam

How to Travel from Hanoi to Da Nang

How to Travel from Hanoi to Hue

How to Travel from Hanoi to Sa Pa

How to Travel from Hanoi to Mai Chau

How to Travel from Hanoi to Moc Chau

How to Travel from Hanoi to Cao Bang

How to Travel from Hanoi to Mu Cang Chai

How to Travel from Hanoi to Ha Giang

How to Travel from Ho Chi Minh to Mui Ne

How to Travel from Ho Chi Minh to Da Lat

How to Travel from Ho Chi Minh to Phu Quoc Island

How to Travel from Da Nang to Hoi An

How to Travel from Hue to Phong Nha

Vietnam Travel Itineraries

Vietnam One-month Itinerary

Vietnam One-week Itinerary

Taking a Gap Year in Vietnam

Backpacking in Vietnam

Expat Tours in Vietnam

Honeymoon in Vietnam

Vietnam Visa, SIM Cards, and WiFi

Visa Info & Where to Buy Sim Cards

Traveling with Wifi in Vietnam

Vietnam Travel Safety Tips

Travel Insurance

Is it Safe to Drink Tap Water?

How to Avoid Mosquitoes

Food Safety in Vietnam

Getting Vaccinations

Common Diseases and How to Prevent

Wearing Face Masks in Vietnam

Can Tourists Drive in Vietnam

How to Avoid Scams

Travel Safety Tips

Best Places to Stay in Vietnam

Deluxe Hotels in Vietnam

Best Hotels in Ho Chi Minh

Best Hotels in Hanoi

Where to Stay in Ha Long Bay

Where to Stay in Mai Chau

Where to Stay in Moc Chau

Where to Stay in Ha Giang

Where to Stay in Cao Bang

Where to Stay in Lang Son

Where to Stay in Sa Pa

Where to Stay in Mu Cang Chai

Where to Stay in Kon Tum

Where to Stay in Da Lat

Where to Stay in Mui Ne

Where to Stay in Hoi An

Homestays in Vietnam

Find more hotels to stay in Vietnam below:

 

Ho Chi Minh Travel Guides

First Time in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh Attractions & Activities

Places to Eat & Drink

Shopping in Ho Chi Minh

Ho Chi Minh City Districts

Local Activities in Ho Chi Minh

Hanoi Travel Guides

First Time in Hanoi

Hanoi Attractions & Activities

Places to Eat & Drink in Hanoi

Shopping in Hanoi

Hanoi Districts

Local Activities in Hanoi

North Vietnam Travel Guides

First Time in Ninh Binh

First Time in Ha Giang

First Time in Ha Long Bay

First Time in Sa Pa

First Time at Yen Tu Mountain

First Time in Moc Chau

First Time in Mai Chau

First Time in Hai Phong

First Time in Cao Bang

First Time in Lang Son

First Time at Bai Tu Long Bay

Central Vietnam Travel Guides

First Time in Hue

First Time in Hoi An

First Time in Da Nang

First Time in Nha Trang

First Time in Da Lat

First Time in Mui Ne

First Time in Buon Ma Thuot

First Time in Kon Tum

First Time in Phu Yen

South Vietnam Travel Guides

First Time in the Mekong Delta

First Time at Con Dao Island

First Time in Vung Tau

First Time at Phu Quoc Island

First Time in Ca Mau

First Time in Can Tho

Powered by 12Go Asia system