- 8h30 : pick up at hotel to visit The Citadel and the Imperial City
The Citadel was constructed around 1804 for Emperor Gia Long and has been on the UNESCO World Heritage list since 1993. The whole complex is located alongside the ‘Perfume river’ inside a first wall that’s about 10km long and forms a square of over 6 square kms. Inside this outside wall is a second wall that protects the Imperial City, a smaller area into which only the Emperor and his entourage were allowed. This is the best part to visit and definitely worth a few hours of your time.
Have lunch at local restaurant.
- The next: visit The Perfume River by boat.
The most famous pagoda in the city of Hue. Its pagoda has seven stories making it the tallest religious building in Vietnam. It was built by Nguyen Hoang and believed to be a fulfillment of a prophecy of a lady from heaven. Thus, naming the pagoda Thien Mu which literally means “celestial lady”. The pagoda was erected at Ha Khe Hill right at the north bank of Perfume River.
Have dinner at restaurant.
Two destinations are tombs of 2 famous kings. Tombs in Vietnam are considered as the second palace, it reflects the previous king’s personality. To save up entrance fees and finish the Hue City Tour in one day, we opted to go to just 2 tombs which bear 2 different architectural designs.
We first went to the tomb of Nguyen Dynasty’s second king, Minh Mang. Even far from the gate, I can see how humungous this tomb is; Binh told us its 18 hectares tomb. King Minh Mang ordered the construction in 1840 of this tomb with a vision that future generation will continue it. The king died in 1841 and his son, King Thieu Tri continued the task according to his father’s plan and was finished after 2 years. This tomb has oriental architectural designs, incorporated feng shui beliefs, which makes me think how noble the king was. There are parts of the tomb that are specifically designed for his reading and writing time. Binh mentioned the king was a poet.
Minh Pavilion this is where King Minh Mang read and wrote poems
Khai Dinh Tomb is definitely different from the Minh Mang tomb. It shows how majestic, luxurious the 12thking was. The tomb is on a mountain and over-looking two other mountains, Green Dragon Mountain on the right and White Tiger Mountain on the left. Feng Shui is highly followed; all the 5 elements should be in it. Entering the tomb, I am astonished by the fusion of oriental and western design. This is the smallest yet the most expensive tomb that the king raised taxes on 30% just to fund it.
Hve lunch at restaurant
Afternoon: visit Huyen Chan princess and stop Dong Ba market to buy souvernir.finish tour