VUON CHUOI ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE: VALUES AND PLANS TO PRESERVE AND PROMOTE THE SITE (Articles at the scientific conference: Assessing the values and proposing plans to preserve Vuon Chuoi archaeological site, Lai Xa Village, Kim Chung Commune, Hoai Duc District)

Vuon Chuoi Site, aka Vuon Chuoi Mound, has geographical coordinates of 21o03'40'' north latitude and 105o43'499'' east longitude and an area of about 19,000m2. The site is on the Lai Xa village, Kim Chung commune, Hoai Duc district field, about 18km west of the centre of Hanoi. Lai Xa Village, Kim Chung Commune, is on National Highway 32, connecting Hanoi with Son Tay, a vital regional socio-economic development route.

Since the first discovery and excavation in late 1969, Vuon Chuoi archaeological site has undergone eight excavations, each of which has brought new results and materials to the archaeological research of the region, specifically as follows:

TimeYears of excavation/research 



Leading/coordinating unitRemarks
1Late 1969100

Vietnam Institute of Archaeology 


University of Social Sciences and Humanities

 (led by Mr Nguyen Xuan Manh)



University of Social Sciences and Humanities

 (led by Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung)


Hanoi Museum and University of Social Sciences and Humanities

 (led by Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung)


University of Social Sciences and Humanities

 (led by Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung)





University of Social Sciences and Humanities

 (led by Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung)


University of Social Sciences and Humanities

 (led by Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung)


University of Social Sciences and Humanities

(led by Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung)


With a total excavated area of 799m2/19,000m2, the excavation pits are scattered over a reasonably large area with different locations, such as the foot of the mound, slopes, and tops. The excavation results only allow a partial scientific assessment of the site's contents, values, and size.

The results of excavations show that Vuon Chuoi stratigraphy is relatively stable (average thickness 100cm) with cultural layers from Dong Dau and Go Mun to Dong Son. Archaeologists have discovered three consecutive cultural layers at this site, ranging from Dong Dau culture (3500-3000 years ago) and Go Mun culture (3000-2500 years ago) to Dong Son culture (2500-1800 years ago), and even the Northern colonial period. This place, a permanent living area of the ancient Vietnamese people, will contribute to not only providing sufficient historical evidence of the very early human presence in Hanoi but also proving the indigenous origin and prehistoric Vietnamese national history. In Hanoi, apart from Dinh Trang (Luu Tu Commune, Dong Anh District), it is rare to find a prehistoric archaeological site like Vuon Chuoi. 

The values of the Vuon Chuoi archaeological site are reflected in the numbers. Through eight excavations, archaeologists have discovered 29 tombs of prehistoric people (most of the tombs belonging to Dong Son culture, buried with pottery and bronze weapons); more than 35 thousand pottery fragments, along with nearly 50 broken and intact pottery artefacts; 216 bronze artefacts; 11 iron artefacts; more than 1000 wooden artefacts; and many bone artefacts. These are enormous statistics for an archaeological site. 

In the past, Vuon Chuoi was a land for crops and a cemetery for local people with an average height of about 1.3m - 1.5m. The entire site fits in the city's Kim Chung - Di Trach new urban area project. Because of the lack of cultivation for a long time, the grass and trees are overgrown, up to more than 1m high.

This site contains many historical research values, especially prehistoric archaeology of the Red River Delta region. However, with the current rapid socio-economic development and urbanization, timely protection measures are required; otherwise, Vuon Chuoi and surrounding archaeological sites will be lost.

Currently, the remaining site is located in the planning area of Thang Long 9 high-end urban area construction project (in two communes of Kim Chung and Di Trach), with an area of 170.29 hectares, and invested by a Construction Trading Joint Stock Corporation. When the project progresses, it will seriously destroy this important archaeological site. For these important archaeological sites not to disappear from the archaeological map, the authorities and people need to implement urgent conservation measures consciously.

Despite having been excavated eight times since 1969, Vuon Chuoi has yet to be evaluated, ranked, or included in the inventory of relics of Hanoi. After the 3rd excavation (12/2009) and discovering ancient tombs and many stone and pottery artefacts bulldozed during construction, archaeologists of the University of Humanities and Social Sciences (Vietnam National University, Hanoi) reported to the media and management agencies, including the Department of Culture and Sports. Hanoi Museum proposed that the City People's Committee provide funds for excavating an unprecedentedly large area at the Vuon Chuoi site (300m2) under the leadership of Assoc. Prof. Ph.D. Lam Thi My Dung. It aimed to assess the size, values, and distribution area of the Vuon Chuoi site as a basis for the protection, conservation, and promotion of the relic’s values. However, a specific protection plan has yet to be implemented. 

Clauses 1, 2, and 3, Article 37 of the Law amending and supplementing several articles of the Cultural Heritage Law (dated June 18th, 2009), stipulate that:

1. Chairmen of provincial-level People's Committees shall organize the formulation of local archaeological plannings and approve and announce the plannings after obtaining written consent from the Minister of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.

2. Investors of projects on renovation and construction of works at sites under archaeological planning shall coordinate and create conditions for competent state agencies in charge of culture, sports, and tourism to conduct archaeological exploration and excavation before implementing the projects and supervising the renovation and construction.

3. In the process of renovation and construction, if it is found that there is a possibility of relics, vestiges, antiques, or precious national objects or the discovery of national relics, vestiges, antiques and precious objects, the project owner must temporarily suspend the construction and promptly notify the competent state agencies in charge of culture,  sports, and tourism.

Under the Cultural Heritage Law, it is necessary to temporarily suspend the construction process of the Construction Trading Joint Stock Corporation to protect the relic and report to the functional agencies of Hanoi and the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism for consideration and decision on a conservation plan. 

So far, according to the Administration of Cultural Heritage, in Vietnam, ranked archaeological relics has been only about 1.3%, including some specific relics, namely Thang Long Imperial Citadel, Con Moong Cave, Dong Son site, Nguoi Xua Cave, My Son sanctuary and Dong Dau Mound. Like the Dong Dau mound, consideration and research for ranking are the most effective conservation and promotion plan for Vuon Chuoi archaeological site.



(Source: Hanoi Museum and University of Social Sciences and Humanities - Vietnam National Univerisity, Hanoi



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Spatial photo of Vuon Cuoi and some surrounding sites

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View of an excavation pit

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A tomb 


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Some typical artefacts/collections

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