Hue is the former capital of the emperors of Vietnam located halfway between Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. It is renowned for its
gorgeous imperial architecture, unfortunately,
much of this was demolished during the Tet
in 1968. The
Perfume River borders the city itself and the former
‘Forbidden Purple City’, the mighty Citadel.
The ‘city within a city’ with its
pagodas, tombs, and lakes hidden by lotus flowers, was mostly
demolished during the War, but visitors can still view evidence of its
former glory. The tombs of many of Vietnam’s emperors are
near the city. The most interesting
probably are the Tombs
of Tu Duc and Tomb of Minh Mang. Hue is also home to exquisite examples of Buddhist pagodas and other
temples, such as the Thien Mu Pagoda.
Da Nang, Hue's neighbouring city, is famous for its China Beach,
Marble Mountain and the Cham Museum, which
boasts spectacular examples of the art of the Indianised
Cham civilisation. About 20 kilometres or 12 miles from Da
Nang lies Hoi An, a charming small riverside town
with many temples and pagodas.
Nha Trang, a charming resort town with a beautiful beach, is one day’s drive from Hoi An, through some of Vietnam’s
most stunning landscape. Da Lat in the Central Highlands, evocative of a
typical French town, is easily reached by car from Nha Trang. It is very popular among Vietnamese tourists
because of its cool climate and alpine scenery.