An ancient capital city.

An ancient capital city.

Hue (pronounced Hway) is slap bang in the middle of Vietnam approximately half way between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh cities. I went on an over night sleeper train from Hanoi to get there which was pretty straight forward and took about twelve hours. Hue was once the capital of Vietnam (between 1802 to 1945) and because of this heritage a number of important Emperors are buried here. It also has a huge complex that once was the Imperial city and home to those Emperors. Below is a model showing the extent of the imperial city. It has been much neglected over the years but is slowly being restored and cleaned up but as always there is not enough money for the project so it happens very slowly a bit at a time.

You enter theĀ 19th-century citadel through a huge decorative entrance just across a bridge that sits over the large moat that surrounds the complex.

Then into a large courtyard with the first restored building at one end. This is a stunning room all red and gold (unfortunately no photos are allowed) it was once the throne room and the place that the Emperor would meet with his main council to discuss and dictate the life of the nation.

Round to the other side of the throne room and into another large courtyard littered with ornate bits and bobs and onto more buildings. The site goes on and on but not much more is available to see.

The site is surrounded by a number of gates to get in and out which are also very ornate and colourful. The one I left from looks like it was created from a dish mash of broken ceramics at one point, quite a creative use of broken things very much something I would do. The Imperial City is well worth a look and over time more and more of it will be restored and available to view.