3 most fascinating tombs to visit in Hue Ancient City
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If one image comes to mind when you think of Hue Ancient City, there is a good chance that it is going to be the Perfume River, Trang Tien Bridge, or maybe the elegant royal gastronomy. But Hue actually has much more to offer to keep you staying as long as you can afford the time to visit. These iconic historical sites in Hue have more or less become the symbols of the Ancient City, so it follows that they are the most popular sites for people to visit on their Hue tours. If you have long been dreaming of a travel to Vietnam for all the rich history, here are these ancient structures that I personally think are most worth visiting.
Tu Duc Tomb – one of the most impressive tombs
Tu Duc Tomb
The Emperor Tu Duc, who reigned for 35 years during the Nguyen’s Fourth Dynasty, is known as one of the greatest rulers of this glorious dynasty. And I think part of this is because of the ancient structure he built during his reign to clearly remind people how awesome the profound knowledge and romance of the king’s characteristics were.
Lying near the pine forest in a valley in Duong Xuan Thuong village, about 5 miles south of Hue city center, Tu Duc Tomb has its importance because it is one of the largest and most impressive works of architecture among many royal palaces and tombs under the Nguyen Dynasty. Located on the far side of a tiny lagoon, the famed Tu Duc Tomb, which was commissioned and designed by the Emperor Tu Duc for himself and his family, was the second palace for his divertissement and the final resting place for the fourth emperor of the Nguyen Dynasty of Vietnam. The royal mausoleum constructed between 1864 and 1867 is also very much among the tourists and visitors of the different countries on their Central Vietnam group tours.
One of the most impressive tombs in Hue
Freely admitting his own mistakes to require an incredible amount of money and labor for the construction of Tu Duc’s tomb, he named his tomb Khiem (Modest). Entering Tu Duc tomb, which is divided into two parts arranged on two parallel vertical axes, you can find many things including the harmony of contours, a scenic park, packed with lakes, hills, pavilions (one of which shelters a 20-tonne stone tablet) among the gentle sounds of nature.
Minh Mang Tomb – the most majestic of all Nguyen Dynasty royal tombs
Minh Mang Royal Tomb
Of all Hue Ancient City’s many historic monuments, the Tomb of Minh Mang has to be its most astonishing and beautiful feat to make it a should-not-miss tomb on any Central Vietnam group tours.
Planned during Minh Mang’s reign (1820–1840) but only completed by his successor, Thieu Tri, Minh Mang Tomb offers a balance of landscaping and architecture that is unmatched among all Hue’s tombs. A burial site of 40 structures, including the pavilions for mourners, a building for the emperor’s clothes, and the tomb itself designed as a symmetric axis (called Than Dao), Minh Mang Tomb is touted as the most majestic of all Nguyen Dynasty royal tombs.
Khai Dinh Tomb – a synthesis of Vietnamese and European elements
Entrance into the Tomb of Khai Dinh
Built in the span of 10 years, Khai Dinh Tomb is the only ancient monument with a harmonious combination between the European modernity and the Vietnam classical characteristics. Smaller in extent but more elaborate in its construction, decoration, and details compared to other tombs, the final resting place of the Emperor Khai Dinh (1885-1925) – the 12th king of the Nguyen Dynasty is worth visiting.
A visit to the historical sites in Hue is a highlight of any Central Vietnam group tours, but the number of ancient structures, the swarms of people, and the stifling heat, particularly during the summer, can make your trip here quite a demanding one. The number of tombs is visited varies according to the length of your trip. But Tu Duc, Minh Mang, and Khai Dinh Tombs are must-visit destinations.