Inside Vietnam: Cambodia Laos


Explore the great Imperial Citadel and grand tombs of the Nguyen Emperors, set on the banks of the Perfume River. Hue is one of Vietnam's most historically significant cities, and also one of its most appealing. Whether exploring by bike, boat or on foot Hue is a wonderfully atmospheric destination.

Hue Map

“If you like great food and fascinating cultural sights, imperial Hue is a must. I thoroughly recommend spending a day or two on the banks of the Perfume River, visiting historical sights and enjoying the fabulous eateries.”

Alastair Donnelly, Director

Hue came to prominence in 1802 when Emperor Gia Long founded the Nguyen Dynasty. In an attempt to unite both Northern and Southern Vietnam, Hue was selected as the dynasty's seat, and the impressive Citadel was built; reflecting and sharing many similarities with the Forbidden City in Beijing.

The dynasty's power began to crumble when the French attacked in 1885, burning the library and pillaging everything of value. The Nguyen Emperors were permitted to remain as puppet rulers under the French authorities until 1945, when a brief Japanese occupation finally brought the dynasty to its end. During the American-Vietnamese War the Citadel suffered massively and was heavily damaged. In recent times, however, a huge effort has been made to restore the Citadel to its former glory. Work is ongoing, making it a fascinating and popular attraction. The historical significance of Hue during its heyday is not forgotten, and the city is regarded still as a cultural and academic centre. The city is also famed its delectable royal cuisine and signatory local dishes; a fantastic complement to its tombs, mausoleums and fascinating historical sites. 

The story goes that when King Hung Vuong VI became fed up of eating the same rice dishes he held a competition between his 22 sons to choose his successor. The king would pass the crown to the son who produced the best and most unusual dish. The old capital of Hue is now known for its creation of delicious bite size morsels of delicate rice cakes, dumplings and a huge variety of intricate and imaginative sharing dishes.

Recommended Accommodation in Hue

The following are some of our favourite accommodation options in Hue.