HUE – THE ANCIENT CITADEL OF VIETNAM
HUE – THE ANCIENT CITADEL OF VIETNAM
Hue Citadel is deeply evocative capital of the Nguyen emperors still resonates with the glories of imperial Vietnam, even though many of its finest buildings were destroyed during the American War.
Hue owes its charm partly to its location on the Perfume River – picturesque on a clear day, atmospheric even in less flattering weather. Today the city blends new and old as sleek modern hotels tower over crumbling 19th-century Citadel walls. A few touts are a minor hassle, but Hue remains a tranquil, conservative city with just the right concentration of nightlife.
This section of Hue attractions showcases the city’s well-preserved remnants of Nguyen Dynasty, royal tombs, and ornate pagodas. Although Hue is no longer the capital of Vietnam (1802 – 1945), many Vietnamese still highly rate this quiet city as a centre of historical and cultural value.
Buildings that link the past to present are set around Hue’s beautiful countryside. Although many of them were ruined (but luckily not totally destroyed) by war, ancient landmarks such as the Citadel, Thien Mu Pagoda and Long An Palace Museum attract travellers from all over the world. Perfect for planning your travel itinerary, read on for our comprehensive list of things to see and do in Hue.
The best attractions in Hue comprise well-preserved remnants of Nguyen Dynasty, royal tombs, and ornate pagodas, most of which are easily accessible on foot or bicycle. Once the capital of Vietnam between 1802 and 1945, Hue was ruled by 10 emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty before its last ruler abdicated the throne in 1945 in favour of the Ho Chi Minh’s communist government in Hanoi. For anyone interested in the cultural history of Vietnam, Hue is a goldmine of tombs, pagodas, castles and ruins.
Set overlooking the expansive Perfume River, a vast majority of these ancient buildings have managed to survive violent wars throughout the years, which led to UNESCO listing them as World Cultural Heritage Sites. Attracting millions of visitors from all over the world thanks to its status as an epicentre of historical and cultural structures, read on for our comprehensive guide of Hue’s most popular attractions.
The Complex of Hue Monuments is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is located in the city of Hue in central Vietnam. Hue was founded as the Vietnam capital city by Gia Long, the first king of the Nguyen Dynasty in 1802. It held this position for nine Nguyen dynasties until 1945.
The massive complex features hundreds of monuments and ruins, such as the Forbidden Purple City, once the residence of the royal family and badly damaged during the Vietnam War, the Imperial City, royal tombs, flag tower, pagodas, temples, a library and museum.
Hue Citadel is located on the banks of the Huong River – Perfume River is about three hours north of Da Nang. Among the most impressive monuments in this former grand imperial capital are the Ngo Mon Gate of the imperial city which once was exclusively used by the royal family and their eunuch servants, the tomb of Emperor Minh Mang as well as the tomb of Emperor Tu Duc. In fact many of the monuments surrounding the royal buildings were constructed in the early 19th century and were modeled Forbidden City. The wall that surrounds the citadel is six metes high and two-and-a-half kilometer long.
The historical complex is known not only for its rich architecture but also for beautiful landscaping. Overall, the site is quite stunning. Avoid Hue between October and December as it gets most of its rain from the northeast monsoon during that period. This small city is also famous for its Imperial-style cuisine. Don’t miss it.
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