This annual event is held to pay tribute to King An Duong Vuong, founder of the ancient Vietnamese kingdom of Au Lac, who led the fight against foreign enemies and ruled the country for 50 years in the 3rd century BC.

The colorful festival of Co Loa Temple will take place until February 6. Photo: VNA

At the opening of the festival, Dong Anh District People’s Committee Chairman Nguyen Xuan Linh recalled that more than 2,300 years ago, after leading the resistance war against more than 50,000 Qin soldiers, King An Duong Vuong established the capital of the Au Lac Kingdom in Co Loa.

“This is one of the extremely valuable historical sites with unique architecture and also an important archaeological site of the country,” he said.

“The Co Loa citadel has become a symbol of the proud ancient Vietnamese civilization,” he added.

Being considered one of the oldest festivals in Vietnam, Co Loa Temple Festival is organized from 6th to 16th on the first lunar month by the 12 hamlets of the Co Loa Commune in Dong Anh District, Hanoi.

When visiting the historical relic those days, festival-goers will have the opportunity to participate in the ceremonial rite in honor of King An Duong Vuong at the Upper Temple, as well as to admire a solemn procession of 12 palanquins arround the Trong Thuy well to the village gate. Various folk performances are also organized such as Quan ho or dual folk singing, water puppetry, among others.

The procession to honor King An Duong Vuong who founded Co Loa Citadel of Au Lac Kingdom some 2,300 years ago. Photo: VNA

Previously, on January 26, Co Loa Festival was officially inscribed on the National Intangible Cultural Heritage List by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

Co Loa Citadel, about 20km north of Hanoi’s centre, is the oldest building in Vietnam, with the largest structure and a long history. Its name, “Co Loa”, comes from Sino-Vietnamese and means “old spiral”, since the structure is built in the shape of a spiral.

Along with Thang Long Imperial Citadel, Co Loa Citadel is believed to represent the thousand-year history of the nation.

Co Loa Temple Festival features various folk performances to help entertain festival-goers. Photo: VNA