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Yen Tu Spring Festival opens in Quang Ninh

Quang Ninh: The Yen Tu Spring Festival, one of the largest and longest festival in the north, kicks off in Uong Bi city of the northern province of Quang Ninh on February 19, or the 10th day of the first lunar month. The opening ceremony features traditional rituals such as drum beating, bell ringing and other spiritual practices. Yen Tu Mountain is closely attached with the name of King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong (1258-1308), the third King of the Tran Dynasty, who defeated Mongol invaders twice during his 15-year reign. The King abdicated when he was 35 and spent the rest of his life on Yen Tu Mountain practicing and popularising Buddhism. He founded the first Vietnamese School of Buddhism called 'Thien Tong' or Truc Lam Yen Tu Zen on the 1,068m-high Yen Tu Mountain. The 20,000ha site is considered the capital of Vietnamese Buddhism. Yen Tu was recognised as a special national relic site in 2013. It is home to dozens of pagodas, hundreds of towers and thousands of ancient relics containing the spiritual values and thoughts of the Truc Lam Zen sect and the glorious culture of the Dai Viet period. Quang Ninh as well as nearby provinces of Hai Duong and Bac Giang provinces have completed a dossier to submit to the UNESCO to seek the World Heritage title for the Yen Tu - Vinh Nghiem - Con Son, Kiep Bac relic and landscape complex. In the first nine days of the Lunar New Year, the Yen Tu relic site welcomed 138,000 visitors, up 19% year on year. The Yen Tu Spring Festival will take place until the end of the third lunar month, or early May./. Source: Vietnam News Agency