Co Loa Citadel

Co Loa Citadel

For generations, the citadel relic and legendary figures like Kim Quy with a magic crossbow who shot down thousands of enemies, King An Duong Vuong building the citadel, and stories about princess My Chau and Trong Thuy, … all have become an indispensable part of the cultural and spiritual life of the Vietnamese people. Now let’s explore the full and detailed Co Loa Citadel tourist guide below!

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How to get to Co Loa Citadel?

Located just 24km from the city center of Hanoi, the Co Loa citadel relic is one of the tourist destinations near Hanoi that many young people choose as a weekend destination. To visit Co Loa citadel, you should follow the old National Highway 1A to km 10, which is Duong Bridge. After crossing the bridge, you will reach Yen Vien town, turn left onto Highway 3, and go another 5km to the intersection of Co Loa.

If traveling by bus, you can take bus route 46 if you are in the My Dinh area or bus no.15, or bus no.17 if you are at the Long Bien transit station.

Hoan Kiem Lake to Co Loa Citadel Route

Click here to view full size route map

Historical and geographical value of Co Loa citadel

From a geographical perspective, the location of Co Loa Citadel is of great significance. This is where there are two arterial rivers for water delivery near Co Loa; which is the second peak of the Red River delta triangle, currently in the territory of Dong Anh district, Hanoi.

Co Loa Citadel is the oldest citadel and has the largest scale and structure. And the structure is also the most unique among the ancient citadels in our country. As an imperial monument of Au Lac country from the 3rd century BC and the state of King Ngo Quyen in the 10th century AD; Co Loa is now recognized as one of 21 national tourist areas. In the relic area, there are works such as Thuong Temple, Ngoc well, Co Loa communal house, An Duong Vuong temple … open all year round to serve tourists and visitors.

Historical Relics

The architecture

After the archaeological process, researchers have discovered a series of archaeological sites reflecting the continuous development of the Vietnamese people from the beginning through the periods, culminating in the Dong Son culture; This is still considered the prehistoric Red River civilization of the Vietnamese nation.

The Citadel of Co Loa was built in a spiral type, so it was called Loa Thanh. Legend has it that there are 9 spiral walls, but up to now, there are only 3 circles left. Citadel with a circumference of 1600m, Outer citadel with a circumference of 15km; its shape is meandering, including countless unique architectural works such as Ngoc well, Cao Lo statue,….

Co Loa Bronze Drum

Co Loa Bronze Drum

Suburban: The suburbs have a circumference of about 8km; The citadel was built by the method of digging up the trenches to get there, embanking the citadel, and building adjacent ramparts. Ancient ramparts are 4-5m high, especially in some places 8-12m high. Total land volume is estimated at 2.3 million m3

Middle city: Having a circumference of about 6.5km; it also has the same structure as the suburbs, but the area is narrower and more solid.

Inner City: An area of about 2km2. It was the residence of King An Duong Vuong with the concubines, fine ladies, and mandarins under the court. Today, this is also the place to set up the king’s temple and gather the historic architectural works related to the relic of the Co Loa citadel.

Co Loa Citadel Festival takes place on January 6 every year according to the lunar calendar. So if you like the festive atmosphere, this time is the best time to visit Co Loa. Co Loa Festival takes place in the early morning with extremely interesting and unique folk procession, rituals, and games …

The festival of Co Loa runs until January 16 with the heaven and earth sacrifice to end.