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You are here:      Home News Latest News Vietnam Travel News 2011 Cultural features of Cu Da ancient village
Cultural features of Cu Da ancient village

Cu Da Village is located in Cu Khe Commune, Thanh Oai District, Hanoi. It is considered as one of the two most ancient villages in the former Ha Tay. Its ancient and tranquil beauty attracts many tourists and researchers both in and outside the country. Cu Da Village is really a symbol of Vietnamese ancient villages in the northern delta areas and it also hides cultural sediments of great values that have still been kept intact today.

Cu Da ancient village, an attractive tourist destination in Hanoi.

Cu Da Village is located on the bank of the Nhue River, about 15 kilometres from center of Hanoi, bearing characters of a Vietnamese village with hundred-year-old banian-trees, rivers, ponds, village wells and ancient mossy walls.

Cu Da villagers still keep traditional and neighbourly lifestyle which has been maintained from generation to generation. So, once visitors coming Cu Da, they will find it easy to inquire the way to some family in the village. This is really a respectfully cultural feature of Cu Da people.

In the 1920s, 1930s, thanks to the favourable location ‘close to the market and the river’, Cu Da was a very busy place for traders to do business all day and night. As a result, Cu Da village’s economy was developed rapidly and the living standard of villagers was improved considerably compared to other regions. Cu Da villagers moved to all regions in the country to do business and settle down there. Some people who were better off had come back to the home village and brought along with them the cultural characters from the city. Houses with the western architectural style mixed with traditional art were built. These were communal houses built under the French-style so that villagers could gather together and make decisions on things of common concern. Each house was numbered like in a big city. Cu Da is among a few Vietnamese villages whose houses were numbered. This has made it so unique, rarely seen in any village in the northern delta area.

The cultural features of Cu Da have been preserved intact which serve as an evidence of a flourishing development period. The most remarkable relics in Cu Da are 50 French-style villas. Partly damaged by time and historical changes as they were, these houses are still kept intact with typical French style. These are two-storey villas with balcony, archway, enamel tile-paved pillars, porcelain-paved walls and so on. Tiles to pave and decorate houses were all made in France in 1910 – 1920 and imported to Vietnam. Architectural patterns and designs of these houses remain, showing the harmony between eastern and western architecture in the early years of the 20th century.

Not only bearing European-style architecture, Cu Da is also imbued with traditional values of a riverside village in the northern delta area.

These were ancient Vietnamese houses and houses of worship built one century ago. These iron wood houses with delicate carvings still stand there to the test of time. The most remarkable house is the ancient house of Trinh The Sung built in 1874 under the Tu Duc’s reign. The house features the typical architectural art of the Nguyen Dynasty as it was made entirely from timber with sophisticated patterns on its doors.

The cultural characters of Cu Da ancient village are also showed through other constructions like temples, pagodas and shrines. Cu Da temple is one of two relics of Cu Da Village recognised as the nation’s historical site. Xa Tac Worship Ritual was set at Cu Da Temple to offer sacrifices and considered as the most beautiful worship place preserved until today. This place of worship dates back to 1921, made from precious stones carved with dragons and symbols of four sacred creatures: dragon, unicorn, tortoise and phoenix. Xa Tac Altar is not only used for the worship of the God of Land and the God of Farming, but it also implies typical features of a historical period in the past.

Cu Da Village is also famous for other ancient communal houses which are used to celebrate common activities and festivals of the whole village.

Such unique relics on a flourishing development period of Cu Da riverside ancient village have made it a ‘must-see’ tourist destination, attracting an increasing number of visitors and researchers in and outside the country.

 

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