On February 28th (January 10th in lunar calendar), the opening ceremony of Yen Tu Festival took place in Giai Oan yard, Yen Tu, Thuong Yen Cong Commune, Uong Bi City, Quang Ninh Province. This year, Yen Tu Festival will last to April 28th.
Yen Tu Festival is one of spring festivals in Quang Ninh annually held from the first to the third lunar month. Although the opening day of Yen Tu Festival was February 28th, about 10 days earlier, thousands of people made a pilgrimage to this scared place to go sightseeing, find peace in mind, and pray for a new year of luck, health, and happiness. According to records of reporters, before one day of the opening ceremony, there were over 1.3 million Buddhists and tourists traveling there. It is expected that Yen Tu Festival will attract more than 2 million visitors.
In the opening day of this year festival (on February 28th), Yen Tu Festival welcome the attendance of Quang Ninh Province’s leaders, other local leaders, hundreds of extras, and thousands of Buddhists and travelers. The ceremony was started with a speech conveying a massage of “Buddhism associated with the development of the country'”. Chairman of Quang Ninh Province along with Chairman of Quang Ninh Buddhist Association hit the drum and rang the bell to officially open the festival. After that, Monk Thich Thien Nhon, Chairman of Vietnamese Buddhism Association, chaired a ceremony to pray for peace and prosperity of the country in an elegant and scared atmosphere. Especially, this year is the first time Yen Tu Festival organizing new activities such as admiring Yen Tu beauty from hot air balloon and watching largest Buddhist flag in Vietnam.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Chairman of Uong Bi City’s People Committee said: “Yen Tu is the famous historical cultural relics of Vietnam. Over 700 years ago, King Tran Nhan Tong after two times defeating invaders gave up his throne, then came to Yen Tu to do spiritual practices and founded Truc Lam Zen. From that time,Yen Tu became a center of Vietnamese Buddhism”. According to Management Board of Yen Tu Relics, the preparation for Yen Tu Festival 2015 were completely finished.
This year, Uong Bi City takes specific measures to ensure that the festival takes place in blissful and safe atmosphere. Illegal actions such as soliciting travelers to buy goods or use services, overpricing, food and drink catering, violating food hygiene and safety when doing food and drink businesses will thorough treated. Therefore, visitors can be assured to join the festival. Along with Huong Pagoda Festival and Bai Dinh Pagoda Festival, Yen Tu Festival is one of the biggest spiritual festivals in Vietnam in spring.