Fodor's Expert Review Hang Duong Cemetery

Con Dao Islands Cemetery Fodor's Choice

The graves of more than 2,000 former prisoners (now considered war martyrs), who died during the 113 years Con Dao was used as a prison, are contained in this cemetery. The vast site, which covers nearly 2 square km (¾ square miles), contains victory monuments as well as marked, unmarked, and communal graves. Every night between 11 pm and midnight, Vietnamese pilgrims, bringing flowers, fruit, roast chickens, and paper offerings, visit the grave of national heroine Vo Thi Sau, who was executed in 1952 at age 19. The air around the grave becomes thick with the smoke of incense as the pilgrims pray and ask Vo Thi Sau for special favors, such as money and improved social standing. It's a very atmospheric ritual and no one seems to mind visitors attending and taking (discreet) photographs. Cemetery attendants are on-site to ensure proper conduct.

Cemetery Fodor's Choice

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Nguyen Anh Ninh
Con Dao Islands, Ba Ria-Vung Tau  Vietnam

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