Learn more: Fascinating Vietnamese myths

A dragon statue

Dragons, fairies and golden turtles – there are many Vietnamese myths! Especially in the rural areas of the country, the locals often live according to these centuries-old traditions. In the following sections, you will learn about some legends. VIETNAM VISA ONLINE has researched for you. Let's get started!

Vietnamese myths – 100 eggs become one people

The most famous saga is about the origins of the Vietnamese people: a fairy and a dragon gave birth to 100 eggs. Half of the resulting children followed the fairy into the mountains, the other half went into the sea with the kite – the first Vietnamese tribes were born. Even today, the locals live in the mountains or at the coast.

But how did this Vietnamese myth and the bond between the fairy and the dragon come about? The dragon once rose from the sea to teach the ancestors of the Vietnamese a civilized life. He showed the indigenous peoples how to make clothes, how to grow rice and much more. The dragon then disappeared into the sea again and only came back when a king from the north subjugated the country.

The inhabitants called for the dragon, who was, more precisely, a dragon lord named Lac Long Quan. So the hero dragged the evil king's daughter up a mountain. As a result, the oppressor desperately fled back to the north. Over time, the dragon and his fairy fell in love and gave life to 100 children.

By the way: This Vietnamese myth is recorded in two important myth and history collections in the country. While the younger tradition speaks of the fairy as the daughter of the invading king, the first one says that the woman was the king's wife.

Pomp and ostentation in Vietnamese

Halong Bay is known to everyone and not just to those who are familiar with Vietnamese myths. What many do not know: Ha Long means translated descending dragon. And this is exactly what the second saga is about: The bay in the north of the country was created when a dragon spat out jewels and jade. With this the creature wanted to fight attacking ships. With success! The warships sank and what remained was one of the most breathtaking places on our planet.

The Vietnamese myth of the golden turtle

The golden turtle from Hoan-Kiemsee is less scary, but no less significant in terms of Vietnamese myths. The animal once gave a poor fisherman a golden sword. This sword gave the fisherman magical powers during the Chinese occupation. Thus the poor man was able to fight not only against his fate, but also against Chinese domination. He won the battle and was soon made king.

When the former fisherman returned to the lake to thank the gods for their blessings, he transformed into a giant dragon that descended into the depths of the lake. Today there is a building in the said place – the turtle tower – which, according to legend, was built out of gratitude by the king.

About fortune tellers, hats and possessions

In addition to the Vietnamese myths above, superstition plays a central role in the country's culture. In this section we present some other interesting facts on this topic.

  • Fortune tellers enjoy greater confidence among the Vietnamese population than is the case in many other countries. Vietnamese often ask a fortune teller when it comes to important life decisions (like the right date for their own wedding).
  • If a person dies, the things that are valuable to him must be destroyed. What sounds mean at first is based on a well-meaning idea. Things can follow the deceased by destroying them in the realm of the dead. So the family member lacks nothing even after his death!
  • A Vietnamese myth says that wearing a hat or hat indoors restricts the growth of the fashion-conscious.
  • Anyone who is offered a drink should also accept it. If you reject it, according to Vietnamese belief, you awaken evil magic.
  • As in other Asian countries, the head in Vietnam is the seat of soul and spirit. Thus the head of every Vietnamese is sacred and must not be touched. Otherwise a long streak of bad luck threatens, both for the touched and for the person touching.

We hope you enjoyed our contribution to Vietnamese myths. If you want to find out how much this actually affects the everyday life of the locals, it is best to book a flight today. An exciting experience is guaranteed!

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Created: 2/6/2020 | Modified: 6/20/2023

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