HUE, AN IMPERIAL DESTINATION
Hue, the former royal capital of the Nguyen Lords, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of Vietnam's most attractive destinations. The last royal capital of Vietnam has quickly become a must-see for its formidable historical heritage as well as for its divine gastronomy and all the tourist interests offered by the poetic city of Hue.
The fascinating history of Hue
In the past, Hue was a large and very active trading port that had regular trade with China and Japan as evidenced by the many examples of pottery from these countries found in Hue. It was not until 1802 that Emperor Gia Long chose Hue as the imperial capital of a reunified Vietnam. A choice motivated by a remarkable natural setting that subtly combined oriental philosophy and Vietnamese geomancy. The Imperial City of Hue was built throughout the 19th century but would suffer for a long time from the vicissitudes of history. It was, in turn, largely destroyed by the French in 1885 and then the Vietminh in 1947, after having lost its status as an imperial city two years earlier, and would experience more than 30 days of intense fighting between the American army and the Vietnamese People's Army during the Tet offensive. Recovering from its wounds, Hue welcomes you today with nobility to make you discover all its cultural, natural and gastronomic treasures.
Discover its set of monuments classified by Unesco.
On foot, by bike, by boat, by Jeep or Vespa, along the mythical Perfume River and on the small country roads, discover all its monuments classified by Unesco:
- The ancient citadel of Hue, one of the most beautiful cultural jewels of Vietnam. Based on the same plan as the Forbidden City of Beijing and built according to the principles of geomancy, geography and astrology, the ensemble exudes an incredible natural harmony.
- The Thien Mu Pagoda, also known as "Heavenly Lady", is beautifully located on the banks of the Perfume River. Founded in 1601 on the ruins of a temple of Cham origin, dedicated to Shiva by Lord Nguyen Hoang of the Le dynasty, the Thien Mu pagoda, the most famous and oldest in Hue, is distinguished by its high octagonal tower of 7 floors evoking the 7 reincarnations of Buddha.
- The tombs of the emperors of the Nguyen dynasty. Scattered in the countryside, in sumptuous natural settings, along the Perfume River, their visits are an opportunity for beautiful walks. Each mausoleum has a different configuration, aesthetics, architecture and natural setting.
Inherited from its imperial past, Hue's gastronomy is the most refined in the country. A high-flying cuisine that stands out not only for its taste but also for its highly desirable presentation. To appreciate this unique cuisine in Vietnam, take a fun and friendly cooking class or participate in a royal meal during which you will have the opportunity to eat like a king!
The aquatic universe of the Tam Giang lagoon
A beautiful walk through the countryside of Hue will lead you to the Tam Giang lagoon from where you will then set off on a sampan to discover this fascinating aquatic world. Tam Giang Lagoon is the largest lagoon in Southeast Asia, 70 kilometres long and is a natural habitat almost perfect for fishing and aquaculture. Here you will meet fishing communities who will show you their traditional fishing techniques and their very special ways of living in this lake environment.
On your way to the Cloud Pass!
From Hue, reach the charming UNESCO World Heritage city of Hoi An by taking a scenic road and the famous Cloud Pass. After driving along a road bordered on one side by the sea and on the other by the vast expanses of rice fields, you will cross the sublime peninsula of Lang Co. The ascent to the cloud pass offers some beautiful panoramas but it is at the top that you will enjoy a breathtaking view! If the weather is clear...
Hue, a discreet seaside destination...
Hue is known to be a leading cultural destination but rarely a seaside destination. And yet, about 15 kilometres from its city centre are beautiful beaches such as Thuan An, which has not yet been disfigured by tourism exploitation.
Not to spoil anything, going there is an opportunity for a very pleasant stroll.
Don't miss the Hue festival!
A festival that takes place every two years in April and is punctuated by shows, parades, concerts and competitions of folk dance and music. An exceptional event to immerse yourself in the traditional culture of Hue.
Best season: April to early September.