Results 1-3of 3 Reviews
Gravesend, United Kingdom
October 24, 2009
From journal Vietnam a Fairly New Holiday Destination. Go before the Masses
by Eric from Aiea
September 21, 2007
The ancient imperial capital and cradle of Vietnamese history and culture was seen as an "open city" not subject to the ravages of wars of the mid 20th century – well – until January 31st 1968. The citadel has suffered from big damages due to fire in 1945 and from the 1968 Tet Offensive Battle of Hue.
The Citadel as a basis consists of three distinct districts, the moat surrounded Citadel (Kinh Thanh), the Imperial Enclosure (Hoang Thanh), and the Forbidden City (Cam Thanh). Construction on the Citadel of Hue was begun in 1802 with aid from the French Emperor Gia Long and modeled it after the Forbidden City in Peking and it would become the residence of the Annamese emperors.
The massive fortress included outer walls that are 6 meters high and up to 12 meters thick, 11 kilometers long, with 11 gates and 24 watch-towers. The three walls that were not bordering the river were encircled by a strange shaped moat that was 90 feet wide at many points and up to 12-feet deep. This city is further surrounded by even more protective walls. Of the sides of the Citadel, three are straight while the forth is rounded slightly as it follows the bend in the river...
Inside the Citadel, the places of interest include: the flag tower, Ngo Mon Gate (The Noontime Gate), the Courtyard for imperial ceremonies, the Palace of Supreme Peace, the Halls of the Mandarins, the memorial temple for Nguyen Emperors, the nine holy cannons, the nine dynastic urns and the Forbidden City of the Imperial family and court. The Citadel had included block after block of row houses, parks, villas, shops, various buildings, and even had an airstrip. Many of these areas are still under restoration. There are many pagodas and small temples and the foundations and ruins of many of the older buildings. Many of the walkways and gates are ringed by red or gold silk lanterns.
One area that you will not see on your tourist maps in the Citadel is the location in the North eastern corner along the moat and Perfume River. Here, during the initial period of the 28 day fight for Hue, a small force of South Vietnamese soldiers of the 1st ARVN (Republic of Vietnam Army) Division headquarters refused to be beat, despite overwhelming odds. To the victor goes the telling of history, and so there is nothing now describing this heroic action. It is off the beaten tourist paths in the citadel – but well worth a bit of reading before you go. I wandered around the area, and other than two passing motor bikes, did not see a single person. Take a good look at the walls in that area, and see the scars of one of the most intensive fights of the American War. Excellent easy reading article before walking the citadel is "the Battle for Hue 1968" by James h. Willbanks.
From journal Fun Times in Hue
May 12, 2005
From journal Palaces and tombs - the river and citadel - Hue