A brief history of Khanh Hoa

According to Ðại Nam nhất thống chí, in 1653, Chăm King – Bà Tấm – had his troops pillage the border areas. Lord Nguyá»…n Phúc Tần sent the Marquis of Hùng Lá»™c to fight off the enemies. Hùng Lá»™c and his troops, in the dark night, passed over  Thạch Bi mountain and marched up to Phan Lang (Rang) River. Defeated, the Chăm King had his son present a letter to Lord Nguyá»…n Phúc Tần, asking for a peaceful surrender and offering the stretch of land between the Eastern side of Phan Rang River and Phú Yên. The Lord accepted the offered land, which he then named Thái Khang Estate and split it into the two counties of Thái Khang and Diên Ninh with 5 districts: PhÆ°á»›c Diên, Hoa Châu, and VÄ©nh XÆ°Æ¡ng districts (of Diên Ninh County) to the South; Tân Ðịnh and Quảng PhÆ°á»›c districts (of Thái Khang County) in the North, under Hùng Lá»™c’s guard.
With this establishment of the new Estate, Lord Nguyễn virtually annexed the present-day Khánh Hoà to the territories of Ðại Việt. This historic event can be seen as a landmark for the formation of the administrative boundaries of present-day Khánh Hoà.

The name of Khánh Hòa was established in 1832 – the 13th year of King Minh Mạng’s reign. The land consisted of 2 counties and 4 districts. Diên Khánh county then included the 2 districts of Phước Ðiền and Vĩnh Xương; and Ninh Hòa County comprises the 2 districts of Quảng Phước and Tân Ðịnh. During the Nguyễn dynasty, under the French colonialist rule, the central seat of the province was at Diên Khánh. By early 1945, Nha Trang Town (now Nha Trang City) became the administrative seat of the province until the present day.

After the total liberation of Southern Vietnam, the two provinces of Phú Yên and Khánh Hòa were unified into the new province of Phú Khánh on October 29, 1975.

On March 30,1977, Nha Trang town was administratively promoted into Nha Trang City.

Session 4 of the Seventh Vietnamese NA decided to annex the island district of Trường Sa into Phú Khánh province on December 28, 1982.

Again, on June 30, 1989, Session 4 of the Seventh Vietnamese NA decided to split Phú Khánh province back into Khánh Hòa and  Phú Yên provinces.

Khánh Hòa is a place rich in historical and cultural values.

At present, on top of the Cù Lao Mount of Vĩnh Phước ward in Nha Trang, there still remain the majestic ancient tower temples worshipping the Holy Mother of the Land – Ponagar. This is a worshipping architectural ensemble, largest of its kind in the system of Champa temples, still remaining in Vietnam.

Besides these temples, there are also other Champa relics such as the Võ Cạnh stele, dating back to the 3rd-6th centuries A.D. This is one of the most ancient steles found in Vietnam and in the whole South-east Asia; Hời citdel, Ông Thạch Temple, Chúa Temple, etc. can also be included in the list. Yet, Ponagar Tower Temples in Nha Trang can be seen as most typical of the Champa culture in terms of architecture, sculpture and documentary steles.

Together with these physical cultural relics are non-physical cultural features, of which the most typical is the myth pf Ponagar – The Holy Mother of the Land, the Ponagar festivities, Chúa Temple ceremony, the worshipping dances, … all of which have long gone into the land’s folk songs and poems.

The remains of Diên Khánh fortress are also evidence of the physical cultural works. The fortress was built by the land’s forefathers right from the establishment of Thái Khang and  Diên Ninh Estates in the protection of Southern Central Vietnam, when people began to open the land, upturn the soil, build their hamlets, and expand the territories of the nation to the South.

The system of pagodas and temples scattering in all the hamlets and villages in Khánh Hòa are still there to worshipping the founding fathers for their merits in helping the people settle their living. The system of the communal houses are proofs of the people’s recollection of their origin, serving a basis for the efforts in safeguarding the family’s renown and reflecting the gratitude towards the forefathers.

The system of Buddhist pagodas, Catholic and Protestant churches, and Cao Đài temples found everywhere in Khánh Hòa have contributed much to educating the people towards the good in the pursuit of the “True – Good – Beautiful”.

With the respect for the past and their gratitude, the Việt generations in Khánh Hòa have always preserving their forefathers’ precious cultural heritages and creating many new cultural values of great pride.
The conservation and preservation of relics have been of major concern with hundreds of ancient items collected and excavated.   These date back from the Stone Age and the Bronze Age and the Iron Age. Many items belonging to the war of national protection waged by Khánh Hòa’s people have been preserved as treasures in the provincial museum.

The cultural-historical relics, the famous beautiful landscapes, the magnificent parks, and impressive monuments shall contribute to forming the physical panoramic picture of a nice, majestic, poetic and rich Khánh Hòa.

The Resolution of the Khánh Hoà’s 14th Party Conference (2001-2005) has set up many objectives in developing the socio-economic setting, formulating major economic programs and projects, in order to exploit to the best all potentials and internal forces to boost up the national industrialization and modernization in an effort to build Khánh Hòa into a strong province in the region.