Tet is the most important festival throughout the year according to Vietnamese culture. This festival marks the arrival of spring based on the Lunar Calendar. Tet takes place on the first day of the first Lunar month and lasts to the third day. In Western calendar, it usually falls in January or February. Tet is the time for family members gather in their home, together cook the traditional meals. The most famous traditional dishes are Chung cake, Day cake, dried young bamboo soup. Besides, Vietnamese people try to get rid of any "bad fortune” by cleaning house, buying new clothes, resolving disputes, and paying their debts before New Year Eve. For three days of Tet, all the streets are full of colors. Visiting Vietnam during Tet holiday definitely will be an unforgettable memory for every tourist.
The Full moon Festival or Mid-Autumn Festival, which is known as Tet Trung Thu in Vietnamese is a wonderful, ancient annual festival. The festival is held on the 15th day of the 8th month of the Lunar Calendar with a full moon at night, equivalent to late September to early October of the Western calendar. It is held every year with the main purpose for children. Mid-autumn in Vietnam is likely to Halloween and Thanksgiving in Western. The must-eat traditional pastry and the symbol dish of Mid-autumn are mooncakes with two main kinds: Banh Nuong (Baked mooncake) and Banh Deo (sticky rice mooncake). There are various activities are held to celebrate the Mid-autumn Festival. Along the streets, on this day you will see plenty of street performances, lantern processions, and art exhibitions. Tourists will surely find new things and feel cheerful between crowd people in this special festival.
In Vietnam, this festival is also known as Le Vu Lan. The annual Ghost Festival takes place on the 15th day of the 7th lunar month, which locals believe that it's the day when spirits of their ancestors are able to visit their homes. This bizarre celebration is one of the largest festivals in Vietnam. On this day, Vietnamese families often put out offerings such as flowers, fruits, sticky rice cakes, boiled cassava, sweet potatoes and sugarcane to nurture the souls of their ancestors. They also place these things in public alters at pagodas for the souls of those that don't have families. Paper money and clothes are also burned during this time of the year.
Hung King Temple Festival takes place at the Hung Temple, which is located on Nghia Linh mountain (about 100 km away from Hanoi). This festival is held in commemoration of King Duong Vuong, who became the first King of Vietnam in 2829 BC. For a long time, Hung King Temple festival has become one of the greatest national festivals in Vietnam. This festival is annually held from 8th to 11th of the third month in the lunar calendar with the main festival day falling on 10th. The festival includes two parts: the incense-offering ceremony and the recreational activities. There are many interesting activities are held on this day such as Xoan singing performance, rice cooking, swinging contests or dragon dancing.
Chua Huong or Perfume Pagoda Festival is the biggest as well as the longest festival in Vietnam. It takes place in three months, from January to March. On these days, pilgrims from all over Vietnam travel to Perfume Pagoda to pray for a prosperous year and pay their respects to Buddha.They also enter caves in which it is built in search of good luck and a great harvest.