Cham Museum Da Nang is a popular tourist destination for visitors in Vietnam. The museum exhibits Cham culture, Cham lifestyle, Cham artifacts and Cham rituals. Some of the items on display are old sculptures from Hinduism. This religion was practiced in the region before the arrival of Buddhism in Southeast Asia.

In this post we will provide everything you need to know before your trip to Da Nang as well as stories about culture and history on display at Cham Museum.

Cham-museum-in-Da-Nang-a-wonderful-destination-to-explore-the-ancient-Cham-culture
Cham museum in Da Nang – a wonderful destination to explore the ancient Cham culture

General information of Cham museum Da Nang

Location

Cham Museum is located at No. 2, 2 Thang 9 Street, Binh Hien ward, Hai Chau district, Da Nang city. It is very close to the Han River and thus, convenient for travelers to visit other nearby destinations. 

Cham museum Da Nang is about 4 kilometers from the airport, 6 kilometers from the train station, and 30 kilometers from Hoi An ancient town.

History

From 192 A.D. to 1697, the Kingdom of Champa ruled Southern Vietnam. The dynasty left behind a legacy of distinctive Cham motifs and Hindu-flavored architecture that characterizes this era. 

The temples and towers on the coast and mountain areas of Quang Nam, Binh Dinh, Binh Thuan, Khanh Hoa, and Da Nang are some of the finest examples of this style.

Danang-museum-of-sculpture-in-the-past
Danang museum of sculpture in the past

Danang museum was built in imitation of the most popular aspects of Champa towers and temples, according to its architects. The majority of the artwork collection here was from Quang Binh and Binh Dinh. 

Cham Museum Da Nang is one of the oldest museums in Vietnam. The museum was built in 1915 with ancient Cham architecture. The establishment of this place was actually first planned in 1902 by EFEO’s Department of Archaeology. 

The building was designed by two French architects: M. Deleval and M. Auclair. Although Cham museum in Da Nang has been extended twice, the design of the original architecture has been well preserved. The Cham Museum officially opened at the end of the 19th century.

Cham Museum in tourism time

Today Cham Museum Da Nang displays around 300 original sculptures made of sandstone and terracotta. The majority of the artifacts are Champa artwork masterpieces. Some of them stand as great as works from around the world. 

The pieces were collected from across Vietnam’s Central province, particularly Quang Binh to Binh Thuan.

The-famous-museum-attracts-hundreds-of-thousands-of-tourists-each-year
The famous museum attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists each year

Almost, the sculptures on display have a similar drifting life to that of the once-glorious civilization that created them. Such unique Champa sculptures were hard to collect and bring here due to the ruins of time, war, and even oblivion. And in this systematic gathering, these works of ancient Champa artists are given new breath.

Besides My Son sanctuary Hoi An, Danang museum is a great destination for visitors to learn about ancient Champ culture while in the city. The city officers have made a great effort to innovate the place and arrange it with modern display and light to attract visitors.

What to explore at Cham museum Da Nang

Follow the road up to the entrance and you will find beautiful antique ceramic bouquets of flowers. Then, the scene becomes extremely quiet and tranquil as you walk down the lane. 

The main building has arched dome and pointed tip. These make the museum stand out in the heart of the city. The rooms of the building have many windows, thus, they provides natural light for the exhibition areas.

The-outer-design-of-Cham-Museum-in-Da-Nang
The outer design of Cham Museum in Da Nang

The Cham museum Da Nang is divided into several chambers but they are all interconnected with each other. 

Sculptured artifacts

Cham sculpture museum has ten distinct interior exhibition rooms. They features a number of famous and important exhibits throughout history. 

Each of the sculptures on view is classified into one of four categories: icon, pedestal, pediment, or fragment. Moreover, the museum displays the pieces in different collection named after the places that the archaeologists found them. 

Among these is the Quang Nam collection exhibiting 32 pieces from the centuries of VII-VII and IX-X. The collection of Quang Tri displays objects from VII to VIII centuries. The Quang Ngai collection exhibits artifacts dating back from the late X to the beginning of XI century.  

The-sculptures-on-display-are-collected-from-different-regions-in-Vietnam
The sculptures on display are collected from different regions in Vietnam

Cham museum Da Nang currently keeps more than 2,000 large and small antiques, about 500 of which are on display, the rest are carefully stored in the warehouse.

These sculptures are mostly original with 3 main materials: sandstone, terracotta and bronze. They date from the 7th to the 15th centuries and clearly reflect the cultural, spiritual and religious life of the Champa people. 

Most of the works depict the gods in Hinduism such as Shiva, Naga Snake God, Laksmi Happiness God,… The museum’s exhibits also include altars, statues, and ornamental works from Hindu and Buddhist temples and towers. 

During your visit, pay attention to the statue of Ganésa – the elephant head and the goddess Apsara sculpture. These artifacts have attracted many tourists. 

Collection of clothing at Cham museum in Da Nang

Beside sculptures, Danang museum also displays different collections of clothing that belong to Cham people. On these clothes, you can see unique patterns as well as accessories such as long scarves that Cham people wear in their daily life. 

One-of-the-exhibit-rooms-inside-the-museum
One of the exhibit rooms inside the museum

There are also many different Cham groups. Each group of Cham people has significant characteristics and they reflect them on clothes. The researchers have used the similarities such as decorative design, the shape of hair curls, and costumes to classify Cham culture.

Although the clothing varies from one Cham group to another, those displayed at Cham museum Da Nang are very original. Having the chance to look at them, visitors can learn part of the culture and habits of Cham people. 

Photographs, films, digital discs and history documents

Cham museum in Da Nang is currently the largest place to store Cham cultural artifacts in the country, with a total area of ​​up to 6,673m2. Ancient relics are on display in an area of 2,000m2, the rest space stores the most rare collection of photographs, films, and digital discs about Cham culture.

Beautiful-Champa-sculptures-on-display
Beautiful Champa sculptures on display

There is also a room for storing history documents that contain precious values of Cham culture. Thousands of tourists come here every year to find the imprint of the once flourishing Cham kingdom, with historical cultural values and quintessence of unique sculptural art.

Tips and cost for your visit to Cham museum

How to get there

Visitors can get to Cham museum Da Nang in very convenient ways. We recommend you try these options as follows.

  •  Motorbike/bicycle: This is a chance for you to ride yourself around the city and go sightseeing. Many hotels, shops and restaurants have bikes for rent so it is very convenient. Renting price for motorbikes is: VND100,000 – 200,000 (about $4.5 – $8.8).

Going by motorbike from the city center only takes you about 10 minutes with the following route: First, go to Duy Tan street. After that, take the first exit onto Nguyen Van Linh at the roundabout. Then turn right on September 2 to reach the Cham museum.

Unique-artworks-of-Champa-people
Unique artworks of Champa people
  • Car/taxi/grab: If you want to avoid the heat outside, then a self-drive car, taxi or grab car is a suitable choice for you. No matter where you depart (airport, train station or even Hoi An old town) taxis and grab cars are always readily available.
  • Bus: Buses in Da Nang actively run everyday. Just remember to check the schedule or ask the hotel receptionists to check it for you before your departure. 

This is the most economical method of travel among all. The fare is from 5,000 VND to 10,000 VND for a one-way trip. There are buses running every 20 to 30 minutes. 

Entrance tickets

The ticket price for one person to visit Cham museum in Da Nang is VND 60,000 (about $2). There are also special discounts available such as one for students. Their tickets only cost VND 10,000 ($0.5).

Entrance tickets are available for your purchase at the entrance gate of Cham sculpture museum. So, you do not have to book them in advance. 

Moreover, if visitors want to hear explanations about the specimens displayed here, they can book a guide. However, this is applicable for groups of 5 people or more. There are three languages available: Vietnamese, English, and French.

Opening and closing time 

Cham museum opens at 7 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. everyday. The Sculpture Museum welcomes visitors on weekdays, weekends, holidays including Tet.

Visitors-can-access-free-audio-presentation-to-learn-more-about-the-artifacts
Visitors can access free audio presentation to learn more about the artifacts

Tips for your visit 

  • There is an onsite shop that sells imitation pieces and there are also English language guidebooks for sale.
  • Danang museum provides free audio guides for tourists. Visitors can choose the languages they prefer and also the artifact they want to hear about by scanning the QR code next to it. 
  • Groups requiring English or French guides need to book an appointment with the museum at least 3 days in advance.
  • Visitors can take photos and videos with handheld cameras. However, special photography/filming sessions need special permission. 
  • No images of the Museum or its collections shall be distributed in any media, including websites, without permission from the Cham Museum Da Nang.
One-interesting-statue-at-Cham-Museum-in-Da-Nang
One interesting statue at Cham Museum in Da Nang

Conclusion

The Cham Museum in Da Nang is the greatest collection of Cham sculptures and artifacts in the world. This is a perfect place for visitors to have an understanding about the Cham kingdom and its culture. Also, the visit to Danang museum of sculpture is also suitable for families and tourist groups. Here, you can admire the impressive works typical of the Cham culture.