Hue - Imperial Citadel

Tours and Activities in Hue you must do - Hue Tour by Local Operator - Tripadvisor Review - Hue Imperial City

Hue attractions - Hue walking tour - Hue city tour - UNESCO Would Heritage Site in Hue

Located in the Central Vietnam, Hue City was the capital of the last Vietnamese monarchy and is the only place that still preserves many of the historical, cultural, architectural and artistic values of the whole nation. Hue is surrounded by both northern and southern natural environments, a land with mountains, plains, waters and sea, all of which feature a full range of beautiful and fresh natural scenery.

Imperial City of Hue

Truong Tien Bridge in Hue City

Hue was founded as Vietnam capital by Gia Long – the first King of the Nguyen Dynasty in 1802. Constructed in 1804, the Hue Imperial Citadel was Vietnam’s last royal dynasty’s residence for 143 years. It held the royal position for 9 Nguyen Dynasties until 1945. The ancient Citadel was severely damaged during skirmishes with the French in 1947 and destroyed by American forces during Tet Offensive (a major military campaign of America – Vietnam War in 1968). Including more than 160 buildings originally, only 20 buildings survived from severe damages under French rule and Vietnam War. Fortunately, in 1993, UNESCO designated the Citadel as one points of the World Heritage List, which enhanced Hue and the Citadel’s position in Vietnam tourism development.

Imperial City of Hue

Hue Citadel

Main history attractions

  • Hue Citadel: Seek for more information and experience about Vietnam royal dynasty? Hue Imperial Citadel is exactly where you need to come. The Complex of Hue Citadel is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which consists of massive complex featuring hundreds of monuments and ruins from Vietnam War. Entering Hue Citadel, travelers may visit the Forbidden Purple City, the Imperial City, royal tombs, flag tower, pagodas, temples, library and museum, which offer much interesting information and experience.

  • Minh Mang’s Tomb: Also known as "Hieu Mausoleum", Minh Mang's tomb is one of the most mystical tombs of Nguyen Dynasty, which is a complex system of 40 beautiful constructions, including temple, pavilion, palace, etc. Combined between landscape and architecture buildings, the tomb can be considered as a microcosm of Hue Citadel, which is a perfect combination of manmade and natural beauty of Hue.

  • Thien Mu Pagoda: Considered as Hue’s iconic symbol, Thien Mu Pagoda and its surrounding comprise a perfect harmony of ancient architecture, natural landscape and religious atmosphere. Being the oldest pagoda in the ancient capital, Thien Mu has a long history through wars and dynastries, with an interesting legend coming along.

  • Thuy Bieu Village: If you are too familiar with sight-seeing and historical attractions in Hue, visiting Thuy Bieu Village is definitely a good choice for travelers who seek to explore the city’s culture and people, especially when Hue is also famous for rustic and simple features of old villages. The village is, in fact, one of the most attractive destinations of Hue. With a long history and its iconic beauty, Thuy Bieu Village attracts many tourists from all over the world for discovering.

Imperial City of Hue

Thien Mu pagoda


There are many festivities held in Hue, especially during half front of the year, such as Tet (between January to February), Hue Festival (April), spring markets, royal ceremonies, traditional villages’ festivals, etc.

Hue people are famous for their elegance, mild manner and ethical behaviors of the land of the old capital city. They can be really nice to you as guests, but sometimes they may be shy or quiet. They consider family as top priority, which explains why Tet is their most important festivals, when family gather together to celebrate new year.

Imperial City of Hue

Royal court music performance in Hue Festival


Travelers are advised to avoid Hue’s typhoon season, during September to December. Visiting Hue from January to April might be the perfect time, when the rain is not so heavy anymore and the weather is cool enough to enjoy the city tour. The first 4 months of the year also bring about many annual festivities, which are wonderful chances for travelers to discover Hue at local festivals.


Travelers often travel around Hue by taxi, motorcycles or cyclos, especially when wandering around the tranquil city. You can also travel by Hue bus, which includes 15 buses on 7 routes. There are many routes stopping right in front of tourist attractions. The buses run from 5AM to 18PM daily.

Travel Tips

  • Hue’s weather is sometimes a bit annoying and unpredictable: You might want to research the weather condition before booking your holiday.
  • Foreigners may ride motorbike without license: Leaving your riding license behind? Don’t worry, if you are confident enough to ride a bike in Vietnam, then the Hue cops welcome you to travel around by motorbike without asking for a license. However, don’t forget to bring your passport as your identity.
  • It is suggested to choose cyclo to visit the inner part of Hue for its safety, comfort and reasonable price. This means of transportation enables tourists to enjoy the rustic and idyllic scenery of the city. Moreover, while going around, cyclo riders can tell stories from the past, introduce interesting attractions and souvenir shops to buys presents for friends and family. In addition, scooters or bicycles rental are another good choice because tourist can ride on their own and visit places that they want instead of those fixed. It is about $8 - $10 for scooters rental fee and $2 - $4 for bicycles rental fee