Van Mieu (The Temple of Literature) was constructed in 1070 during Ly Thanh Tong’s dynasty. Its original purpose was to honor Confucius. In 1076, the first university of Vietnam called Quoc Tu Giam (The Imperial Academy), was established within this temple by Emperor Ly Nhan Tong. That’s the reason why the complex has the name of Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam up to now. Initially, Quoc Tu Giam was the school for princes and children of royal families and then expanded in the following year to admit top students from around the country.
Nowadays, Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam is one of the most famous tourist destinations for both Vietnamese people and foreigners. It’s also a place to celebrate doctorates and high ranking scholars of Vietnam. One special thing about this place is that there are 82 Doctors’ stone tablets. They are tombstones with names and origins of 1304 doctors placed on the backs of stone tortoises. If you come here at the beginning of the year or in May, when many important examinations take place, you will catch sights of numerous families and students who come and pray for luck.
Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam opens daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the entrance fee for each adult is 30,000 VND.