Ngo Mon Hue Imperial Citadel



Hue was the capital city of Vietnam from 1802 - 1945, controversially considered the most beautiful city in Vietnam. There's no doubt that Hue is a city of harmony with the encircling green mountains, the meandering rivers, the Vietnamese traditional houses nestled in trees….Everything of Hue seems to be just in the right place and in perfect harmony.


Gate to the Imperical Citadel of Hue
Gate to the Imperial Citadel of Hue


Hue is charming with combination of the new and the old. The Perfume River bisects the city into the northern and southern parts. To the north is the ancient citadel surrounded by moats which was home to the royal court of Vietnam in the 19th century. From the riverside, the citadel boasts its grandeur with the mossy walls and the colossal flag tower. Touring the ancient citadel you can visit the Palace where the king lived, the quarter for the royal family and concubines, the royal library….Lots of damages during the war are still found here though.



Hue flag tower
Hue flag tower


To the south is where hotels, cafes and fine dining restaurants are found. There are ranges of luxurious hotels lining the river bank boasting the elegance and luxury. The smell of coffee pervading the air, a lyrical song echoing from the river, some school girls in Ao Dai bearing shiny smiles walking hand in hand...Hue has a charm that words fail to do the judge.



Phu Van Lau -- Nghenh Luong Dinh
Phu Van Lau - Nghenh Luong Dinh - Hue Vietnam


To the west of the city is where the royal tombs are found. The Vietnamese kings thought that the west is the direction of sunset and permanent rest. That was why they built different royal tombs in the western part of Hue city. Here the kings would rest permanently in complete peace and tranquility.


The Imperial Citadel Hue Vietnam
The Imperial Citadel Hue Vietnam


Each of the royal tombs was designed by the king himself and the architecture of each tomb tells a lot about the king and the context of Vietnam at the time. Many tombs were constructed, completed and used by the king when they were still in reign. The royal tombs of Hue are definitely fine pieces of arts.

Hue Tourist Attractions

Highlights include the ancient citadel; a cruise on the Perfume River to visit the royal tombs of Minh Mang, Tu Duc, Kha Dinh; the Thanh Toan Roofed-Bridge and the matchless Vietnamese traditional cuisines. Hue should not be missed on your trip to Vietnam.

Hue Imperial Citadel

Hue Ngo Mon Gate


King Minh Mang's Tomb

Tomb of King Minh Mang


King Tu Duc's Tomb

Tomb of King Tu Duc



King Khai Dinh's Tomb

Khai Dinh Tomb Hue Vietnam



The Royal Arena

Perfume River Hue Vietnam
Hue Perfume River

The Dong Ba Market


Thien Mu Pagoda Hue Vietnam
Thien Mu Pagoda Hue Vietnam


Tinh Tam Lake
Tinh Tam Lake (Lake of Meditation)

Hue has always been an exceptional experience for our travellers. You may want to discover about the royal life of Vietnam through the citadel, the royal tombs or the royal cuisine.

You can engage in the hustling bustling daily life which can be found anywhere in the city; be it on the Perfume river, on the streets or on the exotic Dong Ba Market which sprawls the river bank. Having a cruise on the Perfume River with stunning scenery shouldn't be missed. The fine local cuisine or Vietnamese Royal cuisine in many of the garden restaurants which are covered in green offers a relaxing experience. 


Thanh Toan Bridge
Thanh Toan Covered-Bridge

Hue is the only place in Vietnam Royal Music (listed as a World Heritage by the UNESCO) is available. Otherwise, a cruise on the Perfume River with Hue music by local singers offers special experience.

If you want to learn more about the authentic countryside, then you may want to hire a bicycle and ride to the villages with green vegetation just a few hundred meters from the city center.


Lang Co Beach Hue
Lang Co Beach Hue


Private Vietnam Tours's recommended itinerary:
Day 1: Normally people won't have their first morning in Hue or have the morning free strolling on the riverfront. The afternoon should be for exploring the Imperial Citadel with the Forbidden City. It's easy to get back to the time of the royal time in Vietnam and it's more atmospheric visiting this complex in the afternoon. The citadel tour should be around 2 hours.

Day 2: You can enjoy the freshness of the Perfume River with a cruise to the Thien Mu Pagoda (the Heavenly Lady Pagoda) and the Tomb of Tu Duc Kinh. The tomb is exceptional good with the setting and architecture. The history of Vietnam and the life of this king would bring you lots of knowledge about Vietnam right before and right after the French's arrival.

You should travel back to town for lunch or mid day break allowing your fellow travellers to have some time to rest before soaking in more experience in the afternoon. In the afternoon, you can continue onto the Royal Tombs of Minh Mang and Khai Dinh which also offer exceptionally good architecture and extravaganza. For those who want to have a glimpse of more tourist sites, then you can plow the Royal Arena, the Tu Hieu Pagoda.

There are many hotels in Hue ranging from simple guest houses to luxurious 5 star hotels and spas. 
There are many luxurious hotels located on the bank of the Perfume River which offer fresh river view with bustling daily life activities.

Getting there and away
You can travel to Hue from Ha Noi, Da Nang or Sai Gon. There are many daily flights between Hue and Ha Noi/ Ho Chi Minh City which take an hour. 

There are some daily trains from Ha Noi for Hue which takes 12 hours. The trains are air-conditioned and with hard seat, soft seat or soft-sleepers. The train is a good way to travel in Vietnam since it saves you time and money.

From Hoi An or Da Nang you may want to travel to Hue by road which takes 3 hours. The road trip offers stunning countryside scenery. It's recommended that you have stops on top of Hai Van Pass and on Lang Co beach since these places offer sublime natural beauty.


Hue train station
Hue train station


Getting around
On foot: Hue Citadel and Hue shopping and dining are fairly small and can be explored on foot easily. You may want to stroll on the riverside with fresh river breeze, or around the citadel which offers relaxing timeless moments, or get lost in the exotic atmosphere of the Dong Ba market on the Perfume River bank.

Xe Om (Motorbike taxi): There are many Xe Om drivers waiting for clients on many street corners. It's necessary you agree on the price before setting off.

Xich Lo (Rickshaw): Xich Lo is a relaxing way to see Hue and a good way for the others to see you. This offers exotic experience since the it maneuvers you in the busy traffic; everyone is so close that you can't imagine how people don't crash into you! There are many travellers admitting that they had not had their eyes open when on Xich Lo, but the experience was unbelievable!