Hanoi, Sep 3: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today visited the historic Pagoda temple here and the stilt house where revered leader Ho Chi Minh lived, apart from enjoying fishing with his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc.
Addressing Buddhist monks at the temple, Modi said Vietnam was an inspiration for everyone to shun violence and follow Buddha's path of peace and harmony.
"World should walk on the path of peace that brings happiness and prosperity, while war only brings transient greatness," the prime minister said.
"The advent of Buddhism from India to Vietnam and the monuments of Vietnam's Hindu Cham temples stand testimony to these bonds," Modi said.
He said the India-Vietnam ties were 2,000 years old.
Modi emphasised that his visit to Vietnam - the first by an Indian premier in 15 years - was to "nurture a relationship between our two societies and nations."
"These cultural bonds reflect themselves in many ways.
Most prominently, in the connect between Buddhism and the monuments of the Hindu Cham civilization," he said.
"Some people came here with the objective of war. We came here with a message of peace which has endured," Modi said.
Modi said Buddhism, which took the sea route, travelled to Vietnam in its purest form from India.
He invited all the monks to visit India - the land of Buddha - and especially to Varanasi "which I represent in the Indian Parliament."
He said he is fortunate to visit the Pagoda temple after first President Rajendra Prasad in 1959.
The Quan Su Pagoda, also known as Ambassador's pagoda, is said to have served emissaries that were sent from Champa and Laos to Vietnam in the past. The pagodas - a Buddhist heritage and popular toursit sites - are at the heart of Vietnamese Buddhism and are a precious treasure of Hanoi.
The pagoda is said to have served emissaries that were sent from Champa and Laos to Vietnam in the past.
Earlier today, Modi visited Ho Chi Minh's stilt house at the majestic presidential palace. He was accompanied by Premier Phuc and thanked him for his generous welcome.
"Earlier this morning, you made the special gesture of personally showing me Ho Chi Minh's house... Thank you, Excellency, for extending me the privilege. Let me also congratulate the people of Vietnam on their national day that you celebrated yesterday," he said.
The stilt house was the residence of Ho Chi Minh from 1958 until his death in 1969 and is located inside the majestic Presidential Palace in Hanoi.