Compared to incredible attractions near Tam Coc, such as the Trang An boat tour and the Mua Caves, the Thai Vi Temple might seem less exciting.
So why should you even take your time to visit this place?
Well, just because the Thai Vi Temple isn’t as grand as the other attractions in Tam Coc – it doesn’t mean that it’s not worth a visit. It’s a place in Tam Coc that doesn’t get much attention, so we thought we would give it some!
In this blog post, we will tell you all you need to know about the Thai Vi Temple. And then we’ll share our thoughts about why we loved our visit and why you should visit this little hidden gem in Tam Coc.
About Thai Vi Temple in Tam Coc
Thai Vi Temple is a Buddhist place of worship, and it’s built in stone just like the temples at Hoa Lu.
The Thai Vi temple, also known as Den Thai Vi, was built by King Tran Thai Tong in 1258 after his first victory against the Chinese invasion. So it’s a very old temple full of Vietnamese history.
Every year in between 14th and 17th of March, there is a big festival in the Thai Vi Temple. During this festival there are several ceremonies in honor of the King Tran Thai Tong.
So make sure to go visit the temple if you are lucky to be in Tam Coc during the festival – we really think that experience would be something else!
Unfortunately, we don’t know more about the temple, but if you want to know more, you can always hire a guide to take you there.
How to get to the temple
If you’re staying in Tam Coc, it’s honestly super easy to get to the Thai Vi Temple. The temple is located only 1,5 kilometre away from Tam Coc, so you can easily go there by foot, bicycle or scooter.
The road to the Thai Vi Temple is incredibly beautiful! Therefore, we recommend you to take your time and go on foot or bicycle so that you can really enjoy the scenery.
The road to the temple starts by the lake in Tam Coc town center. If you stand by the Tam Coc boat tour place and you walk right, you can follow these different roads: 1) walk around the lake, 2) go to Thai Vi temple, 3) follow the big road to Ninh Binh.
If you are still unsure about which road to take, you can always ask a local and they’ll point you in the right direction.
Thai Vi Temple entrance fee
There is NO entrance fee – the Thai Vi Temple is completely free to visit.
Compared to other attractions in Tam Coc, there also aren’t any parking fees here. So just park your bike and walk in.
Thai Vi Temple opening hours
We couldn’t find the official opening hours for the Thai Vi Temple, but if you visit anytime between morning and afternoon, you should be fine to enter.
Why we loved the Thai Vi Temple
There are a few reasons to why we think that anyone who is in the nearby area should visit this little peaceful place in Vietnam. I personally loved the Thai Vi Temple – not just because of the temple itself – but because of its very beautiful surroundings.
1. The road to the temple is beautiful
First of all, the road to the Thai Vi Temple is just stunning!
Glenn and I have been exploring a great deal of Tam Coc and Trang An on a scooter, and we’ve seen a lot of beautiful landscapes along the way. Yet, we think that the scenery on this short route to the Thai Vi Temple was our all-time favourite.
Bicycling on these small gravel roads was breathtaking.
We had to stop several times to take pictures of the silent limestone cliffs with their green riverbeds in front of them. We even saw a few big water buffaloes on the way!
We really recommend you to just go for a quiet morning walk to the temple and enjoy the scenery. Sometimes, I close my eyes, and imagine myself going for a walk here. Please take me back!
2. The Thai Vi Temple’s impressive stone carvings
Once we got to the Thai Vi Temple, we quickly felt that it was a peaceful place. There was only a handful of other visitors, a small mix of tourists and worshippers. So being at the temple was a really tranquil experience.
I still wish that I knew more about the architecture of this temple because the stone carvings at the temple were very impressive. It’s built in the same temple-style as the old temples at Hoa Lu.
Next time we’re in Tam Coc, we’ll try to find a local with some knowledge about all these temples around Ninh Binh that’s built in stone. It’s really something else! Like a completely different style from all the temples that we’ve seen this far in Southeast Asia.
If you know anything about this stone-temple-style (sorry, we don’t know what to call it), then drop a comment below and share your wisdom with us.
Other than the beautiful stone carvings, the temple in itself isn’t very special.
You actually don’t need more than 10 minutes to check it out. In our opinion, it’s the beautiful surroundings that create this peaceful atmosphere around the temple, which makes the overall experience special.
3. The lily pad pond behind the temple
My favorite thing about visiting the Thai Vi temple is definitely what lies behind it!
We noticed a small path to the left of the temple and decided to follow it. A few steps in and we were standing in between thousands of lily pads!
We’ve never seen that many lily pads in one place.
The scenery of this little path was incredible. Imagine standing on a small path and everywhere you look, you see towering limestone cliffs in all their forms. Then throw in thousands lily pads and some sunlight. This place was just so beautiful.
So if you ever visit this temple, make sure to follow the road behind it and check out the scenery.
Plus, if you follow this little path to the end and turn right until you see a small opening, then you can actually spot the Mua Cave viewpoint from here. It was funny to see the viewpoint from a different perspective knowing that we had just been standing up there the day before.
We really loved how visiting the Thai Vi Temple was more about a wholesome experience of a place rather than just an experience of a temple.
We hope you enjoyed this little blog post about our day at the Thai Vi Temple in Tam Coc. We must admit that it wasn’t the most exciting place to visit in the area, yet it still gave us a good memory.
That’s why we decided to write this post for those of you visiting Tam Coc, so we’re sure you don’t skip out on this little gem.
Thanks for reading and happy travels!