My Son Sanctuary Guide: Explore Ancient Cham Ruins Vietnam
Listed as a World Cultural Heritage Site, My Son sanctuary in Vietnam is a must-visit destination if you’re interested in learning about ancient history.
In this article, you will find all the information you need about My Son sanctuary, including tips to get there, ticket price, opening hours, My Son sanctuary tour, and more.
Before you go to My Son Sanctuary
Here are some quick links and necessary information you should know:
- Where to stay: You can stay in either Hoi An or Da Nang and take a day trip to My Son sanctuary the next day.
- My Son day tour: Klook offers excellent My Son sanctuary tours from Hoi An. You can pick the My Son sunrise tour or the afternoon one.
- What to read: You can prepare your trip better with the Lonely Planet Vietnam travel guide.
- Travel insurance: I’d recommend buying travel insurance when traveling abroad. You can check more information here.
About My Son Sanctuary
My Son Sanctuary consists of various ancient Cham temples in a valley with a diameter of about 2 km, surrounded by hills and mountains.
My Son was a place to perform rituals and worship, confirming the spirits of the reign of the Cham Kings and commemorating the victory and great conquests.
Although time and war destroyed these relics heavily, what remains in My Son still plays a critical role in the history and culture of the world.
What time does My Son Sanctuary open?
My Son Sanctuary opens from 6:30 am to 5:00 pm (all days of the year, including holidays and Tet).
However, the best time to visit My Son’s sanctuary is early morning. Because only then can you see how the valley is awakening in the sun with the shadows of the tilted tower against the grass.
My Son Sanctuary entrance fee
The ticket price for My Son sanctuary is 150,000 VND per person. This fee includes the 2-km trip by electric car to the center of My Son and the art performance.
However, the ticket price does not include the tour guide. I strongly advise hiring a tour guide to understand the place thoroughly. Otherwise, you will wander around understanding nothing.
How much time do you need to spend at My Son Sanctuary?
As the sanctuary is large, you will need 2 to 3 hours to explore the area.
Where is My Son Sanctuary located?
My Son Sanctuary is located in Duy Phu commune, Duy Xuyen district, Quang Nam province, Vietnam.
My Son is 45 km from Hoi An, and 68 km from Da Nang city. The conservation has a total area of 1158 ha.
How to get to My Son Sanctuary from Hoi An?
Bike or Car from Hoi An to My Son
Getting to My Son by scooter is an easy task. From Hoi An, you follow Tran Hung Dao street to Hung Vuong street.
After crossing Vinh Dien river, turn left to Tran Quy Cap street and go straight until turn left again at Quang Trung street.
There will be signs to guide you to My Son, and you will see some travelers driving on the way as well.
My Son Sanctuary Tour from Hoi An
If you’re not interested in getting there on your own, you can take a half-day tour from Hoi An to My Son, including transportation and a guide.
The tour is only $16.5, so it’s a good deal. If you drive there on your own, it’s both tiring and costly (the entrance fee is already $6.5).
Klook offers affordable My Son tours from Hoi An old town. There are two options:
- My Son Early Morning by Bus (starts at 4 am)
- Discover My Son by Bus (begins at 8 am)
This tour includes a pickup service for hotels or private addresses within the Hoi An city center.
I’d recommend joining the early morning one because the sanctuary will not be too crowded and the weather isn’t too hot.
How to get to My Son Sanctuary from Da Nang?
You can get from Da Nang to My Son by bus, bike, or car. I highly recommend joining a tour for a hassle-free experience.
Bus from Da Nang to My Son
You can take bus number 06 to go from Da Nang to My Son:
- Route length: Da Nang – My Son route is over 60km
- Operating time: From 5:30 am to 5:00 pm daily. There’s one bus every 30 minutes.
- Ticket price: 30,000 VND
Bike or Car from Da Nang to My Son
You can follow National Highway 1 to the south to Nam Phuoc town (about 39km), then turn west on Route 537 about 9km to Tra Kieu.
From Tra Kieu, you continue 12km further when you reach the fork, turn left under the instruction board, then go 9km further to My Son.
When reaching My Son, continue on the mountain road for about 5 minutes.
My Son Sanctuary map
Below is the map of the My Son site. You can see the electric car’s sign to My Son relics.
Start exploring from temple K and continue to the complex N, F, E, and G. The complex A and BCD are large and have more things to see.
Things to see in My Son Sanctuary
My Son Sanctuary Museum
I would recommend visiting the My Son Museum before entering the temple complex.
As My Son Museum provides general information about My Son relics and culture, you will be able to spot important relics and understand more about the history and temple structure.
The halt hut
There’s a resting house on the way from the gate to the My Son relic area.
The temple complex
The sanctuary includes different towers. Each has a main building called Kalan and many smaller sub-towers surrounding it.
The towers in My Son Sanctuary have different appearances; each has a sacred meaning about culture and a particular religion.
The main temples in My Son Sanctuary worship a set of Linga or the statue of Siva God, the supreme guardian of the kings of the Champa family.
The sub-temples and shrines are places to store sacrifices and for people to come to the ceremony.
Wandering around My Son Sanctuary, you can see many ruins and items. You can spot many statues of Siva, Nadin, Linga, and Yoni.
Some towers are only ruins awaiting restoration and excavation.
There are some exhibitions in the temples. You can see the bombs that were dropped during the Vietnam War.
The statues & decoration
Visiting My Son temples, you can see that the Indian temple style influences the art and architecture of the temple layout.
The temples in My Son are made of red bricks. Decorative carvings have been cut directly into the bricks.
Is My Son Sanctuary worth visiting?
Especially if you’re visiting Hoi An or Da Nang, you should spend one day exploring these ancient Cham ruins.
My Son Sanctuary restaurant
There are a few restaurants at the entrance of My Son, and they offer free parking.
You can also find some eateries in the towns nearby. We stopped at a random place on the street, and it was tasty.
What to pack for My Son sanctuary?
My Son sanctuary dress code
As you visit a holy place, I recommend covering your shoulder and knee.
You should bring a hat, jacket, and suncream because there’re not many shadows and trees in the area.
Also, bring water and snacks with you as well. There’s no place selling these items when you enter the complex.
You can check more information at My Son sanctuary’s official website.