The Hue Imperial Citadel: A UNESCO World Heritage Site

Posted by Vietnam-Evisa.Org on Jul 24, 2023

The Hue Imperial Citadel is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the city of Hue, Vietnam. It was the capital of Vietnam during the Nguyen Dynasty from 1802 to 1945. The citadel is a walled complex of palaces, temples, and other buildings that was built over a period of 27 years. It is one of the most important historical and cultural sites in Vietnam. 

The citadel is divided into three main areas: the Imperial City, the Forbidden Purple City, and the Outer City. The Imperial City is the most important area and contains the most important buildings, including the Forbidden Purple City, the royal palaces, and the Temple of Literature. The Forbidden Purple City was the private residence of the emperor and his family. It is surrounded by a high wall and is only accessible through the Ngo Mon Gate. 

The Outer City was the home of the general population and contains a number of temples, pagodas, and other buildings. The citadel is a beautiful and impressive example of Vietnamese architecture. It is a must-see for anyone visiting Hue.

Here are some of the things you can see and do at the Hue Imperial Citadel:

  • Visit the Forbidden Purple City: This is the most important area of the citadel and is only accessible through the Ngo Mon Gate. Inside, you can see the royal palaces, the Temple of Heaven, and the Temple of the Perfumed Stelae.

Forbidden Purple City (Tu Cam Thanh), Hue, Vietnam


  • Explore the Imperial City: This is the outer area of the citadel and contains a number of other important buildings, including the Hall of Supreme Harmony, the Hall of Military Merit, and the Library of the Forbidden Purple City.

Hall of Supreme Harmony (Thai Hoa Palace), Hue, Vietnam


  • Visit the Temple of Literature: This temple was built in 1807 and is dedicated to Confucius and other scholars. It is a beautiful example of Vietnamese architecture and is one of the most important cultural sites in Hue.

Temple of Literature (Van Thanh Hue/Van Mieu Hue), Hue, Vietnam


  •  Take a boat ride on the Huong River: The Perfume River flows past the citadel and is a great way to see the complex from a different perspective. You can also visit some of the royal tombs that are located on the banks of the river.

Huong River, Hue, Vietnam


  • Learn about Vietnamese history and culture: The Hue Imperial Citadel is a great place to learn about Vietnamese history and culture. There are a number of museums and historical sites located within the citadel that offer guided tours and exhibits.


If you are planning a trip to Vietnam, be sure to add the Hue Imperial Citadel to your list of must-see places. It is a truly unique and impressive historical site that is sure to leave you in amazement.


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