Cao Dai California Temple – Garden Grove, California - Atlas Obscura

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Cao Dai California Temple

The design of this ornately decorated place of worship closely mirrors a church in Vietnam. 


Garden Grove, a hub of Vietnamese-American culture, is home to one of only four Cao Dai temples in the United States. The striking building is modeled on Mother Church in Tay Ninh, Vietnam and borrows architecturally from everything from Buddhist temples to Gothic cathedrals. As by far the largest and most lavishly decorated Cao Dai temple in the country, this vibrantly colored interior offers much to see.

Cao Dai, or Caodaism, is a syncretic religion, and its followers believe in a unity among all major world religions. According to them, Lao Tzu, Buddha, Jesus Christ, Mohammed, and others weren’t offering competing religions; they were all talking about the same things. Practitioners also venerate noteworthy historical figures such as Sun Yat-Sen, Joan of Arc, and even French writer Victor Hugo.

Know Before You Go

 Visitors are welcome, but asked to be respectful, as this is an active place of worship.

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February 23, 2023

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