Hue Location MapGeneral Information

Proud to be an ancient imperial capital of Vietnam dating from the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1954), the city of Hue has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1993. ‘Poetic, romantic and dreamy’ are three adjectives people use to describe this wonderful city. With its imperial citadel, temples, pagodas and monuments, Hue contains a rich imperial part of Vietnam. Located on the banks of Perfume River (Song Huong) that separates the old city from the modern city, Hue has inspired several Vietnamese painters, singers and poets.

Not only are history and ancient imperial in Hue are worth visiting, Hue is also well-known for sophisticated local cuisines, well-preserved royal music (Nha nhac) and friendly people. The culinary delicacies in Hue are diverse, but you cannot help noticing the presence of numerous vegetarian restaurants. These restaurants attract not only tourists but also local people who come here twice a month, as a part of their Buddhist beliefs.

Hue is a fascinating destination that is always included in our top Vietnam tours. Be sure to discover Hue, the old royal city will welcome you with a lot of surprises.

Hue Weather

In Hue, there are 2 main seasons including a dry season and a rainy season. Summers in Hue are from March to August, it is sultry and the temperature can reach up to 40 degrees. From late August to January, it is cooler, averaging 20 degrees. The rainy season starts from the end of October to January, it is not recommended to visit Hue in this period.

The best time to visit Hue is, in particular, in March and April, when it is normally dry and the climate is cooler although there is still light rain. If you want to discover the ancient capital with royal music, it is recommended to visit this city on the occasion of Hue Festival which is usually held around April each year or at Hung King Memorial Day (the 10th day of the third lunar month).

Hue weather - Hue Travel Guide
Weather in Hue

Getting to Hue

By plane

There are daily flights between Hue and major cities in Vietnam, such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City. There is one international airport in Hue called Phu Bai International Airport, which is 15km from downtown.

  • Hanoi – Hue (700km): 1h10 minutes flight
  • Ho Chi Minh – Hue (950km): 1h25 minutes flight

By train

Every day, trains run between Hue and other cities in Vietnam (Hanoi, Nam Dinh, Thanh Hoa, Vinh, Dong Hoi, Da Nang, Nha Trang, Ho Chi Minh City, etc.).

Trains are of good quality and you can choose different categories: hard seats or soft seats with or without air conditioning, hard beds or soft beds, with or without air conditioners. The train ride between Hanoi and Hue takes around 13 to 16 hours, from Hue to Ho Chi Minh City is about 14 hours (fast train) to 23 hours.

By road

The road network in Vietnam has improved considerably since 2000. There are buses every day between Hue and several Vietnamese cities such as Hanoi, Hoi An, Nha Trang, and Ho Chi Minh City. You can also travel between Hue and Savannakhet or Vientiane in Laos by car. You can also take the bus to get to Ho Chi Minh City, and then from the city, you can take a bus to Phnom Penh and Siem Reap (Cambodia).

Getting around Hue

Perfume River - Hue Travel Guide
Perfume River


Hue is one of the largest cities in Vietnam, so you can easily find a taxi here. But because of the diversity of choice, quality is not always the same for all taxi agencies. Here are some reputable brands in the city: Mai Linh taxi, Thanh Cong taxi, Hoang Sa taxi, Dong Ba taxi, etc.

  • Mai Linh Taxi: 0234. / 0234.
  • Thanh Cong Taxi: 0234.
  • Hoang Sa Taxi: 0234.
  • Dong Ba Taxi: 0234.

Private car

The best way to discover the city is to rent a private car in Vietnam. Price and quality are negotiated before your departure. The travel experts are more than happy to inform you all necessary information.

Xe Om (motorcycle taxi)

There are many xe om on every street corner in the city, as you also find in other cities since it is a convenient means of transportation in Vietnam. You must always remember that it is fun and a bit adventurous to travel by motorcycle and most importantly, the price must be negotiated before you step on the vehicle.

On foot

Dong Ba Market and Perfume River are good places to stroll.


A boat trip is a popular activity to experience a calm and romantic atmosphere of Trang Tien River. You can also enjoy Hue’s traditional music shows while contemplating beautiful scenery along the river. An imperial dinner on boats is also a recommended activity.

Where to Stay in Hue

Vedana Lagoon Resort & Spa - Hue Travel Guide
Vedana Lagoon Resort & Spa

It is easy to find suitable accommodations in the city, from luxurious resorts to budget-friendly choices. We have some recommendations for you:

  • La Residence Hue Hotel & Spa (5-star)

Address: 5 Le Loi Street, Vinh Ninh Ward

  • Vedana Lagoon Resort & Spa (5-star)

Address: Zone 1, Phu Loc town, Phu Loc District

  • Moonlight Hotel Hue (4-star)

Address: 20 Pham Ngu Lao Street, Phu Hoi Ward

  • Saigon Morin Hotel Hue (4-star)

Address: 30 Le Loi Street, Phu Hoi Ward

  • Rosaleen Boutique Hotel (3-star)

Address: 36 Chu Van An Street, Phu Hoi

  • Thanh Lich Hotel (3-star)

Address: 33 Hai Ba Trung Street, Vinh Ninh

What to See in Hue

There are interesting historical, religious and cultural sites as well as mesmerizing natural sceneries in this dreamy city. You can combine your trip to this place with other destinations such as Da Nang, Hoi An and Nha Trang when traveling to Central Vietnam.

1. Hue Citadel

The Ancient Capital - Hue Travel Guide
The Ancient Capital

Hue Citadel is the must-see site of the city. It was the administrative and political center of the Nguyen Dynasty and the royal residence. Built on an area of more than 500 hectares, the Citadel includes Kinh Thanh (Citadel Capital), Hoang Thanh (Imperial Citadel) and Tu Cam Thanh (Forbidden Citadel), which are famous for their royal architecture and rustic gardens. The Citadel witnessed several historic ups and downs and has become an echo of our country’s glorious past. It is considered as important vestiges at the national level by the government of Vietnam.

Imperial Citadel

Imperial Citadel is the second part of Hue Citadel whose function is to protect royal palaces, sanctuaries of the Nguyen dynasty’s ancestors and the Forbidden City. The Imperial City is surrounded by four large brick walls. It was built from 1804 to 1833 with a system of 147 monuments.

Forbidden City

The Forbidden City is a residence of the kings; it was named Forbidden City because civilians were forbidden to enter. In the Forbidden City, there are about 50 large and small architectural works.

2. Thien Mu Pagoda (Pagoda of the Heavenly Lady)

Thien Mu Pagoda, also known as Linh Mu Pagoda, is an ancient pagoda located on Ha Khe Hill, on the left bank of Huong River (Perfume River), about 5 km west of the city center. This pagoda was built in 1600 and preserved over time. Thien Mu Pagoda is a tourist destination not to be missed during your visit to the city. The ancient, magnificent and sacred features of the pagoda attract many visitors and Buddhist pilgrims.

3. Chieu Ung Pagoda

The pagoda was built in memory of 108 Chinese merchants who were mistaken for pirates and killed by Vietnamese people in 1908. Its brilliant architecture which is influenced by the Chinese is the highlight of Chieu Ung Pagoda.

4. Royal Tombs

Ruling our country for 143 years, the Nguyen Dynasty was the last imperial dynasties. There were 13 emperors but only seven of them had tombs, including Gia Long, Minh Mang, Thieu Tri, Tu Duc, Duc Duc, Dong Khanh and Khai Dinh. Minh Mang, Tu Duc and Khai Dinh tombs are three major tourist destinations in this city.

3 must-see royal tombs: Minh Mang, Khai Dinh and Tu Duc - Hue Travel Guide
3 must-see royal tombs: Minh Mang, Khai Dinh and Tu Duc
Tomb of Emperor Minh Mang

Tomb of Emperor Minh Mang was built from 1814 to 1820 on Cam Ke Mountain, Huong Tra District, near the Bang Lang Fork. This tomb is 12km from the city center with 40 large and small monuments. Started constructing in 1840 and completed in 1843, this place consists of several temples and pavilions, two beautiful lakes and the tomb itself.

Tomb of Emperor Tu Duc

Tomb of Emperor Tu Duc is a complex of architectural works, which is located in a narrow valley of Duong Xuan Thuong Village. This tomb is so imposing since it contains 50 constructions! At the entrance to the tomb, there is a romantic lake called Luu Khiem Lake. There are various temples and pavilions here where the King, his wives and concubines entertained by reading books and admiring flowers.

Tomb of Emperor Khai Dinh

The tomb of Khai Dinh, officially Ung Mausoleum (Ung Lang), is located in Chau Chu Mountain. It was built for Khai Dinh King, the twelfth emperor of the Nguyen dynasty. It is the best-preserved tomb and one of the most recent (built in 1925). The tomb is very opulent, with a profusion of statues, mosaics and sculptures of excessive size. It is a combination of Western and Oriental architecture.

Tomb of Emperor Gia Long

Born in 1762 and passed away in 1819, King Gia Long was the founder of Nguyen Dynasty. His tomb contains several mausoleums which dedicated to himself, his mother, his wives and other members of the royal family.

Tomb of Emperor Thieu Tri

Tomb of Emperor Thieu Tri is divided into two parts: the tomb area on the right and a temple on the left. Since Thieu Tri was a nature lover, his monument is close to natural environments and harmonious with the surroundings.

6. Hue Museum of Royal Fine Arts

Formerly a palace belonged to King Thieu Tri in 1845, Museum of Royal Fine Arts is reputable for its unique appearance and precious antiques. The museum displays more than 700 pottery, glazed pottery and wood artifacts from the Ly Dynasty to the Nguyen Dynasty. There are also Chinese, Japanese, and French ceramics. You can see many antiques dedicated to Nguyen Dynasty such as the kings’ costumes, weaving items and some antiques found in the royal tombs, which give visitors a glimpse into the royal life in Hue.

Location: 3 Le Truc, Phu Hau

7. Bach Ma National Park

Bach Ma National Park is about 50 km from the city, between Hue and Da Nang. With a diverse system of fauna and flora and magnificent landscapes, this place is perfect for your eco trips in Vietnam.

8. Beautiful beaches

Beaches like Lang Co Beach, Thuan An Beach or Canh Duong Beach in Hue are ranked among the most beautiful beaches in Central Vietnam that draw many tourists on their family trips to Vietnam.

9. Truong Tien Bridge

Truong Tien Bridge (also known as Trang Tien Bridge) is located in the downtown of Hue, at the northern side of Phu Hoa District and the southern side of Phu Hoi District. The bridge has six spiral steel beams crossing the romantic Perfume River.

Things to Do in Hue

1. Attend Hue Festival

Hue Festival is held every two years, which is a big cultural event to honor the cultural heritage of Hue. As one of the largest festivals in Hue, many community activities are restored at this event in a large space both inside and outside the city.

The most interesting activities are the royal night, Ao Dai party, folk art performances, human chess, traditional sampan racing, kite flying, calligraphy demonstrations, culinary fair, etc.

Hue Festival in 2018 has been organized with many special art performances from 19 countries all over the world, making this festival an international event.

2. Listen to traditional music

Nha Nhac (royal music)
Nha Nhac (royal music)

Sitting on a boat along Perfume River and listening to Hue’s folk songs is an experience you should try on your trip to Hue. Particularly, a boat trip in the evening allows you to admire this sparkling city and immerse in the romantic scene of the moon reflecting on water surface.

3. Enjoy a royal dinner

If you want to have royal experiences in Hue, book the royal dinner on a boat along Perfume River. In your tour to Vietnam, you will have the chance to taste royal dishes while listening to traditional music and even wearing royal clothes.

4. Discover Hue’s tumultuous history

The main attraction of Hue is its tomb systems, citadel, and monuments of the Nguyen dynasty. Visiting historical sites is a must for any trip to Hue. The most famous sites are the Hue Citadel and three mausoleums of Khai Dinh, Minh Mang and Tu Duc.

5. Visit local villages

Thuy Bieu village is a laid-back village located along the upstream of Perfume River. In this village, you can participate in cooking classes, discover local life, cycle under the trees or take a boat trip to admire the romantic beauty of the river or enjoy an excellent massage with herbs.

6. Discover the gastronomy of Hue

The gastronomy of Hue is the representative of Central Vietnam’s culinary arts. The local gastronomy will not disappoint you with its special flavors. From royal cuisine to affordable ones, you will discover a wide variety of foods.

What to Eat in Hue

1. Com hen (rice with baby clams)

This dish is one of Hue’s specialties. It contains rice mixed with spices, peanuts, herbs, vegetables and small clams.

2. Bun bo (beef vermicelli)

Bun bo - Hue Travel Guide
Bun bo

Bun bo Hue is well-known in the region and in many cities as a typical dish of Hue. This dish is made of rice vermicelli, lemongrass, vegetables and beef. In some places, this dish has a very spicy flavor so be careful.

3. Banh bot loc (Vietnamese clear shrimp and pork dumplings)

This dish is made from tapioca flour, shrimp, pork belly and onions. The ravioli are then steamed and placed on banana leaves.

4. Nem him

Nem him contains minced pork seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic and chives. The whole is wrapped on a stem of lemongrass. It is a must-see dish, not to be missed during your stay in the city.

5. Banh Khoai

Inside a rice cake, people add soya, eggs, onions, herbs, vegetables and shrimps for this dish. Banh khoai is then dipped in fish sauce.

Read more: 5 Must-try Foods When You Visit Hue

Souvenirs of Hue

1. Me Xung (Chewy sesame peanut candy)

Me Xung is a type of snacks in Hue. It is made with sugar, peanut and sesame. In Hue, there are dozens of Me Xung manufacturing facilities such as Song Hy, Thien Huong, Thong Huong, Thanh Binh, Nam Thuan, Hong Thuan, etc. Depending on the type, brand and size, each package is sold from VND 20,000 to 50,000 dong.

Where to buy Me Xung?
  • Nam Thuan: 135 Huynh Thuc Khang
  • Hong Thuan: 137 Huynh Thuc Khang
  • Thien Huong: 138B Chi Lang.

2. Lotus seeds

The lotus seeds in Lake Tinh Tam are the highest quality grain type in Hue. Currently, in Hue, other lakes also produce lotus seeds, but it is not as good as those of Lake Tinh Tam. If you want to buy fresh or dried lotus seeds, you can visit the Dong Ba Market where there are many different types. It costs about VND 200,000 dong/ 1 kg fresh lotus seeds.

3. Non (conical hat)

Non (conical hat) - Hue Travel Guide
Non (conical hat)

The conical hat is not only a hat but a sophisticated craft. The conical hat is a special souvenir of Hue that is popular for many tourists.

Where to buy Non?

From large markets such as Dong Ba, An Cuu, Ben Ngu, etc. to small markets such as Sia, Pho Trach, you can buy Non at around VND 60, 000 – 100,000 dong/ hat.

4. Royal tea

Royal tea is produced based on the secret imperial recipes of Nguyen dynasty. Royal Hue Tea is now packaged for easy shipping. You can buy them at around  VND 40,000 – 150,000 dong box.

Where to buy royal tea?
  • Royal tea Duc Phuong: 24 Nguyen Hue Street, Vinh Ninh

Other souvenirs

Check out the following addresses if you would like to buy traditional crafts such as bronze statues, wooden carvings or embroidery:

  • XQ Silk Embroidery Gallery, 81 Tran Hung Dao Street: specializes in the production of high-quality embroidery
  • Dong Ba Laquer, 4 Tran Hung Dao Street: specializes in lacquer and fine arts
  • Nguyen Phuc Long, 8 Hung Vuong Street: specializes in bronze products
  • Duc Thanh, 82 Phan Dang Luu Street: specializes in silk embroidery