About 90 km northwest of Ho chi Minh thành phố in Tay Ninh, you will find one of the most special temples in Vietnam. The Cao dẻo temple complex is the sacred building of a religion that has not been around for very long. The faith originated in Tay Ninh around the year 1926 and gained its followers mainly in South Vietnam. Nowadays you can also find Cao dai temples in the United States & other countries. You will also come across a Cao dai temple more than once in other cities, especially in the south of Vietnam. The temple in Tay Ninh is nowadays also popular with day trippers from Ho chi Minh City.

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Cao dẻo religion

Caodaism is a special faith that originated in 1926 in Tay Ninh in southern Vietnam. Followers of Caodaism believe in the existence of one God, so-called Monotheism. In addition, people have tried khổng lồ create the ideal religion by combining things from multiple faiths. In the faith you will find many elements of Asian religions such as Buddhism, Confucianism & Hinduism, but also of Islam và Catholicism.

The large temple was built between 1933 và 1955 và a Cao dai army was even established to lớn fight against the Japanese occupiers during the Second World War. After the war, the Cao dai army was abolished by Prime Minister Diem and the leader was exiled. After the communist takeover in 1975, the Cao dẻo faced oppression again before their religion was officially legalized in 1985.

The faith is still most strongly represented in the Mekong Delta và has between 2 & 7 million Vietnamese followers. You can also encounter Caodaism in countries such as Australia, North America và Europe. All clergy are vegetarian và celibate. At the head is a Pope and the higher clergy are all male. Among the lower clergy you will also find many women. The thiết kế of the buildings is fairly uniform and various symbols are used. The temple in Tay Ninh is one of the largest in the country.

The Cao dẻo Temple


The Cao dẻo Temple is a bombastic và colorful building, where hundreds of worshipers flock daily in fluttering trắng robes. The Cao dẻo temple can be recognized by a large eye on the facade and two square pagoda-style. The outside of the main temple appears to be sagging, but that is an optical illusion caused by the stairs leading up. Despite the fluorescent colors and rococo excess, this ostentatious building somehow manages to lớn transcend the tackiness. Inside, statues of Jesus Christ, Buddha và the Hindu god Brahma stand peacefully side by side. The most common motif in the temple, the eye, is encompassed by a triangle, lượt thích that found on a US dollar bill.

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The complex where the temple is located is also worth exploring. You will find several smaller sacred buildings, houses for the devotees và there is a special homeopathic hospital that attracts people from all over Vietnam. Inside the Cao dẻo Temple, you are allowed to walk as a tourist, as long as you stay on the aisles và don’t venture between the rows of pink Corinthian pillars with green dragons that crisscross the space.

Entrance fee: FreeDistance from đô thị center of Ho chi Minh City: 95 km

Ceremony at the Cao dẻo Temple


Attending a prayer at the Cao dai Temple is one of the absolute highlights for many visitors. This is a very photogenic spectacle. The priests are the most photogenic: they are dressed in yellow, red and blue, the followers wear white robes. The men sit on the right and the women on the left in orderly rows during prayer. During prayer, “the eye” is worshipped. The sacred eye symbolizes god and has the Ying & Yang icon in the pupil.


Attending a ceremony in the Cao dẻo temple is possible at fixed times; 6 o’clock in the morning, 12 o’clock và 6 o’clock in the evening. Before the service you can walk around yourself, during the ceremony you can only stand on the balcony và view everything from above. You are allowed to take pictures, but you must be quiet during the service. In addition, you must dress decently & leave your shoes outside in a specially designated place.

Combine with a visit to lớn the Cu bỏ ra Tunnels

Most tourists will visit the Cao dai temple in combination with a tour to lớn the Cu bỏ ra tunnels. Tours depart from Ho đưa ra Minh thành phố early lớn visit the tunnels và then attend prayer at 12 noon. Few tourists visit the temple on their own. If you want to bởi this, it is best khổng lồ agree a fixed price with a taxi driver or someone from Grab. It is then nice khổng lồ combine a visit to the temple with the tía Den Mountain. You can optionally stay at the Vinpearl hotel Tay Ninh. After visiting the temple you can relax by the pool, with spacious và modern rooms.

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More Cao dẻo Temples in Vietnam

The Cao dai Temple near Ho chi Minh city (in Tay Ninh) is not the only Cao dẻo temple in Vietnam, but it is the biggest. You can a lot more Cai dai temples in Vietnam, but most of them in southern Vietnam & then central Vietnam, including domain authority Nang, Phu Quoc & the Mekong Delta.