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Emperors Tombs

emperors tombs, far east vacation
Khai Dinh tomb

Emperors Tombs - The other great attractions in Hue are the Tombs of the Emperors, which are located along the Perfume River south of the city.
* Tomb of Gia Long (20km): the most remote of the tombs, quiet and fallen into disrepair as Gia Long, the first Nguyen emperor, was notoriously despotic.

* Tomb of Minh Mang (12km):
in this opulent complex, the main buildings are arranged on an east-west axis, including a courtyard surrounded by warrior statues and several temples and pavilions. Several bridges cross two lakes before the axis ends before the vast burial mound. The mausoleum features large gardens and lakes: a pleasant place to sit and relax.

* Tomb of Thieu Tri (8km):
built in 1848. This Emperor and his wife were the most revered and loved throughout the country. Although he only ruled for 7 years, he was the most sorely missed. His last will was that he be placed in a tomb that was not extravagant, parting ways with the tradition of creating lavish final resting places for their Emperors.

* Tomb of Tu Duc (7km):
the complex served as a second Imperial City where the Emperor went for "working vacations". Tu Duc's contemplative nature and poetic spirit is reflected in the landscape and arrangement of the 50 buildings that at one time stood here. A vast, sprawling complex set around a lake, with wooden pavilions and tombs and temples dedicated to wives and favored courtesans. The Emperor's tomb itself, tucked away in the back, is surprisingly modest – the final courtyard is nearly empty with just a stone coffin in the middle.

* Tomb of Khai Dinh (10km):
this is the best preserved of the lot and, while comparatively compact, quite grand at first sight. While it follows the classic formula of forecourts leading up to the tomb of the Emperor, complete with statues in attendance, architecture buffs will spot some European influences.