Filled with sublime experiences and iconic monuments, Hue is a sightseer's paradise.
Perhaps the most scenic and atmospheric of Vietnam's cities, Hue is instantly captivating. Equal parts romantic, historic, and spectacular, its serene character, relatively uncongested streets, and unparalleled imperial monuments set it apart from the competition. Overlooking the fabled Perfume River, so called for the aromatic plants which line its peaceful banks, it's easy to see why Hue has inspired many artists, poets, and composers over the years, and visitors here enjoy some of the most spectacular views the country has to offer.
Recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site, Hue’s enormous citadel area, constructed under the Nguyen dynasty, makes it a place of great interest for lovers of culture and history. Perfect to navigate on foot, the citadel is a vast expanse of temples, palaces, gardens, gates, bridges, and moats stretching around ten square kilometres in size. Without a doubt one of Vietnam's most worthy sightseeing spots, inside the walls lies the mysterious Forbidden Purple City, home to the emperors for over a century. Later used as a military fort, more recent historical marks are evidenced in the bullet holes and damages sustained during conflicts in the 20th century. You can even take an excursion out to the demilitarised zone to witness the area's tragic past first-hand.
Some of Hue's most impressive temples, pagodas, and royal tombs lie scattered along the river and can be discovered on a guided tour, or enjoyed in style as you drift past on an authentic dragon boat or luxurious river cruise. Surrounded by lush scenery and rugged hills, you can stretch your legs with a picnic in the pine-covered Thiên An, or admire the views and stunning waterfalls at the pristine Bạch Mã National Park. For an unforgettable introduction to local life, visit one of the many markets for delicious street food and handmade local crafts.
Hue's tropical monsoon climate and unique location at the feet of a mountain range means the city can be overcast and rainy for much of the wet season, which lasts from September to March. The region's dry season is much more pleasant, with temperatures peaking between May and August. Visiting during the dry months will also allow you one of the best Hue experiences - swimming in the river that runs through the Phong Nha caves.