Hue was Vietnam’s imperial capital from 1802 to 1945, and the seat of Nguyen Dynasty emperors – the country’s last dynasty. Hue boasts its vast citadel surrounded by a moat and thick stone walls, which encompasses the Imperial City with palaces and shrines. The city is also known for mesmerizing tombs of the last emperors, revealing fascinating insights into the lives of the imperial families and their subjects.
The ancient capital of Hue reflects the pomp and ceremony of the dynastic rulers as well as the scars of many years of turmoil, both ancient and modern. Though it was also the battleground for the Battle of Hue - the longest and bloodiest battle of the Vietnam War, it retains a sense of grace and majesty even today.
Start your Hue explorations by taking a cyclo to the Truong Tien Bridge to cross the beautiful Perfume River, ride along the famous Dong Ba Market to see how people in this historical city live. Then follow a branch of the Perfume River to an area surrounding the Citadel, where local people have lived for generations in their old style houses. When arrival at the Noon Gate, say goodbye to your cyclo driver and walk to the Imperial Citadel, once the emperor’s home. Along way, your guide explains about the events and the intrigue of the former royal court.
Drive on to Thien Mu pagoda, which was built in 1601 and known as Hue’s best-preserved religious monument. This Buddhist pagoda stands on the riverbank with its seven-story tower at its heart, it is a sight to behold.
From the pagoda, depart for the Tombs of King Minh Mang, which located in a tranquil setting of green gardens and lotus ponds. The tomb is a harmonious design of balance and symmetry for the emperor’s resting place. Finish up the day at King Khai Dinh’s Tomb, which is traditional Vietnamese in design with a European touch making it unique from the other tombs in Hue.