Vietnam Culture Guide

Vietnam travel guideThe Culture of Vietnam which is the agricultural civilization based on the wet rice cultivating is one of the oldest of such in the Asia Pacific region. In terms of prehistory, most Vietnamese historians consider the ancient Dong Son culture to be one of the defining aspects of early Vietnamese civilization.

Long periods of domination and interaction with its northern neighbor, China, has resulted in Vietnam's historic inclusion as part of the East Asian Cultural Sphere, known widely as Chinese Cultural Sphere. Historically, passing the imperial Mandarin exams was the only means for Vietnamese people to socially advance themselves.

Following independence from China in the 10th century AD, Vietnam began a southward expansion that saw the annexation of territories formerly belonging to the Champa civilization (now Central Vietnam) and parts of the Khmer empire (today South Vietnam) which resulted in minor regional variances in Vietnam's culture due to exposure to these different groups.

During French colonial period, Vietnamese culture received marcant influences from the Europeans, including the spread of Catholicism and the adoption of Latin alphabet — to this day, Vietnam is the only non-island nation of Indochina which uses the Latin Alphabet to write the national language.

In the socialist era, the cultural life of Vietnam has been deeply influenced by government-controlled media and the cultural influences of socialist programs. For many decades, foreign cultural influences were shunned and emphasis placed on appreciating and sharing the culture of communist nations such as the Soviet Union, China, Cuba and others. Since the 1990s, Vietnam has seen a greater re-exposure to Asian, European and American culture and media.

Vietnamese culture may be still mysterious and unknown to most people outside the country. Today, more and more people are going to Vietnam for traveling and trading. Getting to know Vietnam and Vietnamese culture is interesting and fascinating. We hope with this website, you can find the most fascinating resources to understand Vietnamese culture and beyond.

Vietnam's traditional arts command a great part of the country's rich heritage. Since ancient time, Vietnam society has cherished excellence in its arts. Over centuries, Vietnam arts have developed its own unique styles and forms. Singing, sculpture, calligraphy, painting, carving and others are the main forms of expression in Vietnam arts.

Vietnam’s cultural diversity stems from its intriguing history dating back more than 4000 years. Its historical legacy includes a thousand years of Chinese occupation, which has left a very strong cultural influence evident in the pagodas, local cuisine and continuing practice of Confucianism. The Cham civilization, which blossomed in the central region until the 14th century, has left many ancient Hindu like temples. Vietnam’s regal past can still be seen in the former capital of Hue and its Citadel and Royal Tombs. The French colonial period is still evident in many parts of Vietnam, as illustrated by the distinctive yellow pastel colored architecture of its villas and administrative buildings.

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