On this blog, I have written about so many pagodas in Vietnam but this one is very different. Let’s see.
Situated right at the heart of Cam Ranh city, Khanh Hoa, Oc (Shell) or Tu Van pagoda is a favorite stopover of many visitors.
What makes Oc pagoda well-known to tourists is Bao Tich tower and 18 hell levels built with shells, corals. Bao Tich tower was built in 1995 , 39 m high, comprising 2 floors. The upper floor worships Buddha, the ground floor serves tourists. Enter the tower, tourist can not hide surprise at unique patterns manually created from thousands of shells and clams. The building was listed in Vietnam Record Book as the highest bao tich pagoda.
Coming to Oc pagoda, tourists should not miss the chance to discover the pathway to hell. This is a 500 m long tunnel imitating torture that sinners undergo in hell at each gate. The tunnel is very dark and meandering, the tourists must use torch or candle to light up the way. This partly increase the thrill of tourists when passing 18 levels of hell. After finishing the trip, tourist will get out by an exit of which design looks like the mouth of a big dragon.
Aside from these buildings, Oc pagoda also used shells and clams to make some subsidiary works. In Oc pagoda, tourist will enjoy spacious setting, fresh atmosphere and visit many large Buddha statutes.
At present, many travel agents offer Oc pagoda as a religious tourist destination in their tour to Cam Ranh.