The Ly Thai To Statue & Park is a memorial to the founder and first king of the Ly Dynasty. The Ly Thai To Statue stands firmly on a popular spot at the popular Indira Gandhi Park. The Ly Dynasty reigned over the entire country of Vietnam for more than 200 years starting from 1009 to 1225 A.D. The dynasty was founded and initiated by Ly Cong Uan who eventually changed his name when he ascended to the throne. He then called himself King Ly Thai To instead. It was he who moved the capital of Vietnam to Dai La, which he renamed Thang Long. This initial move then resulted to the founding of Hanoi as a city until it eventually became the country’s present-day capital.
Buddhist was the Ly Dynasty’s major and state religion. The Ly monarchy established over 150 monasteries in the region of Thang Long alone. The Dynasty of Ly came to its closing stages in year 1225 with an insightful commoner, Tran Canh. He married the final queen of the Ly Dynasty and maneuvered his way up to the throne. That led to the founding of the Tran Dynasty.
The Indira Gandhi Park was a popular venue for events and outdoor concerts of colonial officers during the French colonial era. By 1984, the park was renamed into its present name in honor of Indira Gandhi. Indira Gandhi was a fervent supporter of Vietnam and its long standing friendship between Vietnam and India. During his reign as Prime Minister of India, he had increasingly developed and strengthened the ties between the two countries. Unfortunately, the Prime Minster of India was shockingly assassinated. In honor of the deepened and well-established relations between the two countries, Vietnam renamed the park in tribute to the late Prime Minister. Today, a statue of Indira Gandhi also lies within the similarly named park.
The Park has always been a busy meeting place for the people of Hanoi. Locals are usually seen exercising, doing “tai chi”, playing all sorts of sports activities, dancing or just plain relaxing amidst the park’s pleasant environment. Another popular scene in the park are local kids break dancing right in front of the Ly Thai To Statue. It seems that those teenagers have taken advantage of the perfectly slick marble of the monument.
Many claim that the Indira Gandhi Park is one of the nicest and most well-maintained parks in Hanoi. Although not much open space is provided, a beautiful lake named Thanh Cong Lake lies in the middle of the park amidst tall buildings giving visitors a different feel of the busy capital of Hanoi.
The Statue of Ly Thai To in the Park of Indira Gandhi is found east of the Ho Hoan Kiem. When walking towards the south along the Dinh Tien Hoang Road, the park and statue can be seen on your left side. It is the sole statue along the way so it will not be hard to miss. The Ly Thai To Statue & Park is not only a place for recreation but it also serves as a reminder of the once competent leaders that have ruled the two countries. It has then significantly marked its place in the capital city of Hanoi.