The Imperial City Hue is the most famous tourist attraction of Hue city, which recognized by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage in 1993. It included in the list of 95 national monuments by the Prime Minister of Vietnam. It is a particularly important part of Vietnam. The imperial city is a famous national relic, well known by many people. Coming here, you not only admire the scenic spots. We also learn about the history and unique architecture of Vietnam’s feudal authority. Let’s follow Mekong Smile to discover all about this tourist destination!
About The Imperial City Hue
The Imperial City Hue (Architectural Complex of Hue Ancient Capital) are historical and cultural relics built the Nguyen Dynasty. (from the early 19th century to the first half of the 20th century). In the area of the ancient capital of Hue. The Complex of Hue Monuments is divided into 2 parts:
- Out side: Hue Citadel and inside Hue Citadel.
- Monuments in the citadel include: Ky Dai, Quoc Tu Giam School, Long An Palace, Hue Royal Fine Arts Museum, Ngo Mon Gate, Thai Hoa Palace, Dai Trieu Nghi Courtyard, The Mieu, Hung Mieu, and Dien Tho Palace.
Hue Ancient Capital managed by Hue Monuments Conservation Center as a World Cultural Heritage on December 11, 1993. In addition, this heritage cluster included in the list of 62 national monuments of special importance by the Prime Minister of Vietnam.
The history of The Imperial City Hue
On the material and spiritual foundation that formed in Hue since the beginning of the XIV century. The Nguyen lords (16th-XVIII centuries), Tay Son dynasty (late 18th century) and 13 Nguyen kings (1802-1945). They continued to promote and build in Hue an invaluable cultural asset. The most typical is the Complex of Monuments of the Ancient Capital. Compared with the thousand-year-old wonders of humanity in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List.
The Imperial City Hue built in the summer of 1805 by King Gia Long himself. The Nguyen dynasty’s high officials, surveying and undertaking fieldwork.
- In 1809, 10 gates around the citadel were gradually opened.
- 1818, focus on building bricks on 4 sides East – West – South – North.
- In the period from 1831 to 1832, King Minh Mang built more shooting walls on the outside of the citadel, completing the overall architecture of the citadel.
During 143 years from 1802, this was the capital of the Nguyen Dynasty.
Where is The Imperial City Hue in VietNam?
The Imperial City Hue located along the banks of the Huong River and a few surrounding areas in this province. It is the cultural, political and economic center of the province. It was the ancient capital of Vietnam during the feudal period. Under the Nguyen Dynasty from 1802 to 1945. On the north bank of the Perfume River, the architectural system represents the authority of the central Nguyen regime. There are three citadel: Hue Citadel, Hue Imperial Citadel, Hue Forbidden Citadel.
How to visit this place
The Imperial City Hue located right in the heart of Hue City. Therefore, you can move here by motorbike, car or taxi. Many foreign tourists often choose to use bicycles or cyclos to feel the beauty of Hue clearly. While protecting the environment. Means of travel to Hue are extremely diverse. You can easily choose the one that suits your budget and time. Tourists can travel by popular means such as train, sleeper bus. In which, riding a bike will very convenient. Hue’s tourist attractions all concentrated in the city. If you rent a motorbike, you will more active, travel more and save money. Tourists can choose a train, bus or plane to Hue. Then, rent a motorbike or taxi to go to the ancient capital. You need to arrange a reasonable schedule to have enough time to experience the scenic spots.
Motorbike rental in Hue is quite cheap compared to other places. Car rental price for a day ranges from 100,000 VND – 150,000 VND for scooters. And the price is from 80,000 VND – 100,000 VND for a normal bike. Alternatively, you can hire a taxi or self-drive mean. The rental price also ranges from 400,000 VND to 800,000 VND/day.
Ticket price and the opening time of The Imperial City
Ticket prices for each place in The Imperial City Hue:
- Hue Imperial Palace (Citadel – Museum of Royal Antiquities): Adults 200,000 VND, children 40,000 VND.
- Tomb of King Minh Mang, Tu Duc, Khai Dinh: Adults 150,000 VND, children 30,000 VND.
- Tomb of King Gia Long, Thieu Tri, Dong Khanh: Adults 50,000 VND, children free.
According to the tour route:
- 3 (Royal Palace Hue – Tomb of King Minh Mang – Khai Dinh): Adults 420,000 VND, children 80,000 VND.
- 4 points (Hue Imperial Palace – Tomb of King Minh Mang – Tu Duc – Khai Dinh): Adults: 530,000 VND, children: 100,000 VND.
- Combined route of relics (visiting all monuments): Adults 580,000 VND, children 110,000 VND.
Opening hours to visit Hue Citadel
- Summer: 6:30am – 5:30pm
- Winter: 7:00 am – 5:00 pm
The architecture of The Imperial City Hue
The Imperial City Hue located in the heart of Hue, on the north bank of the Huong River that flows through from West to East. The architectural system representing the authority of the central Nguyen regim. It still standing before many changes of time. These are Citadel, Imperial Citadel, Forbidden Citadel, three interlocking citadel. Arranged on a vertical axis from the South to the North.
The system of citadels at The Imperial City Hue is a model of a harmonious combination between the architectural quintessence of East and West. Set in a beautiful natural setting with so many naturally available symbolic elements. People automatically consider them to be parts of the Hue Citadel. These are Ngu Binh mountain, Huong Giang stream, Gia Vien dune, Boc Thanh dune. Seen from the opposite side, the architectural works here seem to blend in with nature to create magical rhythms. It make people forget the human hand has acted on it. The Imperial Citadel limited by a ring of nearly square walls with. Each dimension approximately 600 meters with 4 entrance gates that are most unique often taken as the symbol of the Ancient Capital:
- Ngo Mon is the supreme administrative area of the Nguyen court.
- Inside the Imperial Citadel, slightly behind, is the Forbidden City, the royal residence.
Throughout all three citadels in The Imperial City Hue, sometimes paved with concrete and sometimes conventional. Next, the Shinto road running from the banks of the Huong River carries the most important architectural works of the Hue Citadel. Both sides of this Shinto road are hundreds of large architectural work. Next, arranged in regular balance, intertwined with plants and trees and flickering. When hidden among the colors of nature, it is always giving people a feeling of lightness and serenity.
Mausoleum of the Nguyen kings
Far to the west of The Imperial City Hue, located on both sides of the Huong River. Morever, the mausoleums of the Nguyen kings considered the achievements of landscaped architecture. King’s mausoleum sometimes a paradise created for the owner to enjoy while living. Then, it becomes an eternity when entering the afterlife. With such meaning, the mausoleum architecture here has a completely separate style of Vietnam. Each mausoleum of King Nguyen reflects the life and personality of the resting owner:
- Gia Long’s tomb is rustic but majestic in the middle of the mountains and forests. Making viewers feel the heroism of a war general who has experienced hundreds of battles.
- Minh Mang’s mausoleum majestically arranged in the middle of the forest, lakes, and ponds, cleverly embellished. The magnanimity of a talented politician and the dignified character of a poet can be seen.
- Tomb of Thieu Tri is profound, both profound and melancholy, keeping the field not lonely. It also partly expresses the confidant of a transcendent poet. But he could not connect his predecessors in politics.
- The poetic and lyrical Tomb of Tu Duc created mainly by the sophistication of people. The scenery here reminds visitors of the image of a man carrying the compassion of a king who could not be fulfilled.
Famous royal gardens
The Imperial City Hue used to have famous gardens such as Ngu Vien, Thu Quang, Thuong Mau, Truong Ninh, and Thieu Phuong. Next, it is the garden architecture style here that spreads everywhere in folklore. Then, it combined with available factors, gradually shaping a typical garden house style of Hue. So, this is a city of garden houses with old and serious houses hidden among peaceful area.
Each garden house bears the shadow of the miniature Hue Citadel, also has a screen to replace Ngu mountain. Furthermore, a water tank to replace the Huong stream, a pair of flower clusters instead of Da Vien and Boc Thanh dunes. With all the elements of criminal history, back occipital, left long, right tiger. Next, four seasons of fruit, chirping birdsong. So, that space is also the world of poets wearing guests to soak in the bay. A place to perform heartless Hue songs like Nam Binh, Nam Ai in the cool windy nights of the moon.
Impressive points of Hue Citadel attract tourists
- The most intact royal relic in Vietnam: After more than 2 centuries of existence, the palaces, citadel. Tombs of kings in the Complex of Hue Ancient Capital are still preserved.
- The Imperial City Hue architecture in military style: This is a rare relic built in the style of Western military architecture combined with Eastern architecture.
- There are many unique mausoleums of kings and lords: The mausoleums are built according to Feng Shui.
- A place to store and preserve treasures and court music: You will discover ceramics and porcelain with historical value at Hue Museum of Royal Antiquities. In addition, you will enjoy the traditional court music of the East of Hue royal court music when coming here.
- Re-enact royal rituals: Hue royal festival has a national scale and is organized by the state. The large and small festivals held every year will recreate some of the royal rituals.
What is the appropriate time to visit The Imperial City Hue?
Depending on the season, The Imperial City Hue will wear different beauties. However, the time to attract the most tourists is the first 6 months of the year. Next, this is the time when in Hue as well as in the Citadel. There are very exciting festival activities. However, if you want to travel to Hue in the last 6 months of the year. You should check the weather in advance so as not to affect the schedule. Because this is the time when Hue often welcomes big storms of the year.
Check-in with Hue Citadel with brilliant lights at night
If during the day, The Imperial City Hue wears a majestic and dignified shirt, at night this place becomes very shimmering and fanciful. Morever, The colorful electric lights simultaneously glow creating a wonderful scene in the heart of Hue City. Don’t forget to save yourself some beautiful photos to make memories. In the minds of many people, Hue becoming a festival city is almost an inevitable thing. Because Hue still retains quite a typical appearance of a capital of the feudal dynasties, but the architecture is in harmony with the natural environment. So, it creates unique rhythms with richly preserved traditional festivals, music, and cuisine.
Notes when visiting the Citadel
The Imperial City Hue is a rather stately place. Therefore, you need to keep a few notes in mind to make your trip go smoothly:
- Visitors are not allowed to take pictures, record the interior and touch the artifacts while visiting.
- You should prioritize outstanding costumes for check-in but must be discreet.
- The area of Hue Citadel is quite large. Therefore, you should give preference to sandals or sports shoes for easy movement.
- You should carry a map to avoid getting lost between the arcs.
- There are trash cans around the aisles. So, please keep the common hygiene and throw the garbage in the bin.
- Visitors can also hire a local guide for a more detailed explanation of the Hue Citadel.
The Imperial City Hue still retains its ancient beauty of the ancient capital. Hope the above experiences have helped you gain the necessary knowledge for the upcoming exploration.