Unique 400-year-old whale worshiping ritual in Vietnam
Update: Feb 23, 2022
A whale worshiping ritual has been continuously preserved by local residents of Canh Duong fishing village in the central province of Quang Binh for the past 400 years.    

Canh Duong village is home to roughly 7,000 fishing boats. Local fishermen hold the annual ritual in order to express their gratitude for nature along with their strong desire to enjoy both a peaceful and prosperous life.

Their faith encourages people to endure difficulties and rely on the sea for their livelihood. The ritual takes place on the 15th day of the first lunar month annually.

This year sees the event limit gatherings as a means of preventing the potential the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The highlight of the festival is the worshipping of the whale skeletons which are kept intact at the Whale Worshiping Shrine in Canh Duong village.

The shrine is closely associated with the legend of Mr and Mrs Whale who saved fishermen from heavy storms before floating ashore to Canh Duong and dying. Two giant whale skeletons which are both the biggest and oldest in Vietnam have been kept and worshiped at the shrine for the past 200 years.

Locals make offering to the whale as they pray for happiness, peace, fortune, and favourable weather conditions.

After the whale worshiping ritual is complete, fishermen in Quang Binh province are now ready to go fishing offshore.