Phat Diem Church – Unique architectural symbol in Ninh Binh

Phat Diem Church, 120km south of Hanoi, is located in Phat Diem town, Kim Son district, Ninh Binh province; built in the years 1875 – 1898. Phat Diem means creating beauty; This architectural work is a delicate combination between Eastern Buddhism and Western Catholicism.

Phat Diem Church

Phat Diem Church – an ancient church over 100 years old; built for 30 years. The work is made entirely of stone and iron wood known as “the capital of Catholic Vietnam”.

The gate to the Phat Diem church building clearly shows the harmony between Eastern and Western architecture, creating a unique impression.


The architectural complex of Phat Diem church includes a lake, monument, Phuong Dinh, Cathedral with four churches on both sides, three artificial rock caves, and stone churches. That is why this is also known as Phat Diem stone church.

The Cathedral in Phat Diem Ninh Binh stone church was built on an area of ​​about 117 m wide, 243 m long; with five ornate stone arched entrances, with two typical match-roofs.

In particular, the church’s heart is 74m long, 21m wide, 15m high, with four roofs. In the church there are 6 rows of monolithic ironwood columns; two rows of columns between 11m high, 2.35m in circumference, each column weighs about 10 tons.

A very unique and indispensable point of the Phat Diem church is the upper house of the cathedral; where there is a large altar made of a monolithic stone 3m long, 0.9m wide, 0.8m high, weighs about 20 tons.

The front and sides are engraved with flowers typical of the four seasons, along with the streaks of yellow lacquer of the traditional cathedral; make the altar appear covered with a light jelly scarf.

On the two sides of the church, there are four small churches designed in a particular style; giving the guests an unforgettable impression.

When visiting the Phat Diem building, you will easily see the Cross mounted on the lotus with delicate, meticulous carvings; showing the beauty of Eastern and Western cultural interference.

Over 100 years of existence; despite being affected by natural disasters and wars; the project is still quite solid and preserved to this day.

The architectural complex of the Phat Diem church was ranked as a national-level historical and cultural monument in 1988. Ninh Binh province and related agencies are completing a dossier requesting UNESCO to recognize Phat Diem as a World Cultural Heritage.

Coming to Phat Diem church is an opportunity for you to admire and learn the beauty in traditional architecture; At the same time, we can feel the careful history, refinement as well as the talent and skill of the ancient artisans through both elaborate and vivid carvings.

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