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Xa Tac temple festival in the border area

Held in 2 days with many activities, the Xa Tac temple festival contributes to affirming the characteristics in cultural, spiritual and religious activities of the people in the top part of the country.

Xa Tac Temple is located in Ka Long ward, Mong Cai city, Quang Ninh province. The temple was built in the south direction, on high, airy land with an area of ​​​​about 20,000 m2, on the banks of the Ka Long River, close to the Vietnam – China border. The temple was formerly known as the “Temple of the Temple of Xa Tac Dai Vuong” (The place where the altar was set up to sacrifice to the local god of the village).

Xa Tac Temple was built around the end of the 13th century, the beginning of the 14th century under the Tran Dynasty to worship the god Xa Tac (Xa Tac Dai Vuong) – the royal scene of the ancient Mong Cai province. In addition, here also worships Hung Nhuong Dai Vuong Tran Quoc Tang, the local god of the village and the ancestors of the clans who have come to reclaim this land. Xa Tac Temple Festival is held for 2 days (March 2-3) every year.

The festival includes many activities such as the announcement ceremony, the water granting ceremony, the wood education ceremony, the Xa Tac ceremony… and the folk games activities held in the temple’s premises. The main day of the festival on March 3 is the ceremony to welcome the gods (procession of the gods to travel to spring). The procession attracts a large number of people and tourists from many places to participate.

One day before the opening of the festival is a water procession to breathe holy. A boat carrying the sacrifice team floats down the river along the Ka Long River to collect water. Mr. Quynh (64 years old, residing in Ka Long ward), said that when the Covid-19 epidemic had not yet broken out, every time Xa Tac temple held a festival and launched boats along the river to perform a water granting ceremony, the people of Dong Hung, Chinese standing along the river to see.

Water from the Ka Long River is stored in clay pots and carried in a palanquin carried by 6 healthy young men. “The meaning of the ritual of the water procession to worship the saint is to wish the saint to bless the people in the area with good luck, good crops and good health,” said a member of the delegation.

Quan, residing in Hai Hoa ward, said that his family has a business store in a shopping center near the border. Mr. Quan prepares gifts to offer to Xa Tac Dai Vuong and prays that the whole family will be healthy, and the business will have many advantages.

In addition to the offerings such as pigs, chickens, ducks, seafood… there are also specialties of Mong Cai land such as Banh Chung and sticky rice with five colors (5 colors) which are enjoyed by local people in the Mong Cai region. Prepare and decorate eye-catching offerings to the temple.

After the rituals are held in the temple, the procession will process the tablets of Tac Dai Vuong Commune and Hung Nhuong Dai Vuong Tran Quoc Tang traveling along the road along the Ka Long River. People on both sides of the road prepare a meal right in front of the door to welcome the Saint’s palanquin to pass. Duong (24 years old, residing in Ha Long City), accompanied her friends to the spring temple and burned incense. “I hope this year the Covid-19 epidemic will end so that people can return to normal life. I plan to visit some tourist attractions of Mong Cai such as Sa Vi cape, Tra Co beach….” .

Nguyen Phuong (grade 11, residing in Ka Long ward), shared that for the second year in a row, he was able to participate in the rituals of Xa Tac temple. “I learned many lessons about history, culture, and spiritual calendar, especially the meaning of Xa Tac temple affirming the country’s sovereignty over the border,” Phuong shared.

Mr. Sinh, a calligrapher, said that every year the temple held a festival, he would bring pen and paper to the temple to give letters. “This is a temple with historical traditions, a sacred place for people to express their culture and beliefs and express their everyday thoughts and aspirations,” Sinh shared.

Mr. Do Van Tuan, Vice Chairman of Mong Cai City People’s Committee (Head of Organizing Committee), said that the Xa Tac temple festival is part of the tourism stimulus program of Quang Ninh province and is one of the events of the national tourism year. Every year, the festival attracts many people and tourists to participate, but this year due to the complicated development of the Covid-19 epidemic, the organization is shortened and ensures spiritual rituals. sacred.

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