Nha Trang – Qui Nhon – Quang Ngai – Hoi An – Hue
Highlight: The kingdom of Champa (Campadesa or nagara Campa in Cham and Cambodian inscriptions written in Sanskrit;
Chăm Pa in Vietnamese, Chiêm Thành (占城) in Hán Việt and Chen Ching in Chinese records) was an Indianized kingdom of Malayo-Polynesian origins and controlled what is now southern and central Vietnam from approximately the 7th century through to 1832. Champa was preceded in the region by a kingdom called Lin-yi (林邑, Middle Chinese *Lim Ip) or Lâm Ấp (Vietnamese) that was in existence from 192 AD, but the historical relationship between Lin-yi and Champa is not clear. Champa reached its apogee in the 9th and 10th centuries AD.
Thereafter began a gradual decline under pressure from Đại Việt, the Vietnamese polity centered in the region of modern Hanoi. In 1471, Viet troops sacked the northern Cham capital of Vijaya and in 1697 the southern principality of Panduranga became a vassal of the Vietnamese emperor. In 1832, the Vietnamese emperor Minh Mang annexed the remaining Cham territories.
Before the conquest of Champa by the Vietnamese king Lê Thánh Tông in 1471, the dominant religion of the Cham people was Hinduism, and the culture was heavily influenced by that of India. The Hinduism of Champa was overwhelmingly Shaivist, that is, focussed on the worship of Shiva, and it was liberally combined with elements of local religious cults such as the worship of the Earth goddess Yan Po Nagar. The main symbols of Cham Shaivism were the linga, the mukhalinga, the jatalinga, the segmented linga, and the kosa.
A linga (or lingam) is a phallic post that serves as a representation of Shiva. Cham kings frequently erected and dedicated stone lingas as the central religious images in royal temples. The name a Cham king would give to such a linga would be a composite of the king’s own name and suffix “-esvara,” which stands for Shiva.
A mukhalinga is a linga upon which has been painted or carved an image of Shiva as a human being or a human face.
A jatalinga is a linga upon which has been engraved a stylized representation of Shiva’s chignon hairstyle.
A segmented linga is a linga post divided into three sections in order to represents the three aspects of the Hindu godhead or trimurti: the lowest section, square in shape, represents Brahma; the middle section, octogonal in shape, represents Vishnu and the top section, circular in shape, represents Shiva.
A kosa is a cylindrical basket of precious metal used to cover a linga. The donation of a kosa to the decoration of a linga was a distinguishing characteristic of Cham Shaivism. Cham kings gave names to special kosas in much the way that they gave names to the lingas themselves.
This 10th century Cham segmented jatalinga stands at the temple complex of My Son.The predominance of Hinduism in Cham religion was interrupted for a time in the 9th and 10th centuries, when a dynasty at Indrapura (Dong Duong in Quang Nam Province of modern Vietnam) adopted Mahayana Buddhism as its faith. The Buddhist art of Dong Duong has received special acclaim for its originality.
In the 10th centuries and following, Hinduism again became the predominant religion of Champa. Some of the sites which have yielded important works of religious art and architecture from this period are, aside from My Son, Khuong My, Tra Kieu, Chanh Lo, and Thap Mam.
Air conditioned bus/van
Truck to carry bikes
English speaking biking tour guide
Entrance fees and boat
Airport transfer in/out
Pick up & drop off at your hotel
Meals as mentioned (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)
Bike/Helmet/Tool kit/First aid kit/Mechanic/Doctor(10 travelers)
Water, snacks, cold towers, soft drinks and fresh fruits for cycling day