02-19 Hue

The nine Dynastic Urns in the forbidden purple city

19th.February, Hue sightseeing

Hue in central Vietnam was the seat of Nguyen Dynasty emperors and the national capital from 1802 to 1945. The major attraction is its vast, 19th-century Dai Noi Citadel, surrounded by a moat and thick stone walls. It encompasses the Imperial City, with palaces and shrines; the Forbidden Purple City, once the emperor’s home; and a replica of the Royal Theatre.

There were no Buddhist temples to be visited but a tour of the ancient city followed by a short boat trip along the river and an equally short drive to the shrine of the second emperor of Vietnam, the most famous of the 13 that there were. Although the ancient city was bombed by the French and then the Americans it is a UNESCO site and is being painstakingly rebuilt. It is very well done but it will take decades to complete it all. It is not really that old since it only dates back to the early 19th.century. The shrine is older and original but of course not so extensive.

We were back to sunshine and 32deg in Hue which lies some distance south of Hanoi. I even made use of the hotel pool in an enclosed courtyard, where I could also watch the bats flying over the water.

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