Exploring the Royal Tombs

24

Nov
2021

Exploring the Royal Tombs

Posted By : admin/ 47 0

Scattered across the scenic countryside to the south of  Hue, the tombs of the Nguyen Emperors (see p45) are  among the area’s most compelling attractions. Although  13 rulers sat on the imperial throne between 1802 and  1945, only seven were given the honor of their own  mausoleum, or lang, as the others died during exile or in  disgrace. All seven tombs have features of outstanding  architectural merit, and can be reached by bicycle,  motor bike, taxi, and by boat. Restoration work is currently  taking place, which may make some areas inaccessible.

.    Tomb of Tu Duc  4 miles (6 km) SW of Hue.  Open 7am–5pm daily. &  Considered by many to be the  most elegant tomb in Vietnam,  the mausoleum of Tu Duc  (r.1848–83) was designed by    the king himself. Set on a pine-  forested hill, it is flanked by    beautiful lotus ponds and  aromatic frangipani trees. Tu Duc  was known to have preferred  the quiet comforts of his future  tomb to his own palace. It is said  that when Tu Duc died, he was  buried secretly along with a  great treasure. All those involved  in his burial were later executed  to keep his final resting place  safe from desecration.

.    Tomb of Tu Duc  4 miles (6 km) SW of Hue.  Open 7am–5pm daily. &  Considered by many to be the  most elegant tomb in Vietnam,  the mausoleum of Tu Duc  (r.1848–83) was designed by    the king himself. Set on a pine-  forested hill, it is flanked by    beautiful lotus ponds and  aromatic frangipani trees. Tu Duc  was known to have preferred  the quiet comforts of his future  tomb to his own palace. It is said  that when Tu Duc died, he was  buried secretly along with a  great treasure. All those involved  in his burial were later executed  to keep his final resting place  safe from desecration.

P Tomb of Dong Khanh  0.3 miles (0.5 km) SE of Lang Tu Duc.  Tel (054) 383 6427. Open 7am–6pm  daily. &  The smallest of all Nguyen  tombs is the mausoleum of  Dong Khanh (r.1885–88). The  French influence is quite  prominent in its interior, where  images of Napoleon Bonaparte  hang from the red-lacquered  iron wood pillars. The tomb  benefitted from a restoration  project completed in 2009.

Tomb of Thieu Tri  1 mile (1.5 km) S of Lang Tu Duc.  Open 7am–5pm daily. &  The small tomb of Thieu Tri  (r.1841–47) fea tures several  artificial ponds, although it lacks    the usual extensive walled gar-  dens. The complex is divided    into two parts. To the east, a  delicate temple salutes the  deceased, while to the west  is the tomb itself.

Tomb of Khai Dinh  6 miles (10 km) S of Hue. Tel (054) 386  5875. Open 6am–5.30pm daily. &  Khai Dinh (r.1916–25), the  penultimate Nguyen Emperor,  was the last to be buried in a  royal tomb at Hue. His tomb    makes use of concrete, combin-  ing European and Vietnamese    architectural styles in a unique  but not entirely succes sful  fusion. Built into the side of a  hill, the tomb rises steeply  through three levels. In the  temple at the summit is a  bronze bust of the emperor,  cast at Marseilles in 1922.

P Tomb of Minh Mang  7 miles (12 km) S of Hue.  Open 7:30am–5:30pm daily. &  Located on the west side of the  Perfume River, the maus oleum  of Emperor Minh Mang, who  died in 1841, is one of the most  impressive royal tombs. The  complex comprises picturesque  lakes and gardens, as well as  numerous buildings.

P Tomb of Gia Long  10 miles (16 km) SE of Hue. &  The mausoleum of the first  Nguyen Emperor, Gia Long, is  best reached by boat, either  from Hue or from the tiny  village of Tuan, opposite Lang  Minh Mang. The most remote of  all, it suffered extensive damage  during the Vietnam War and  sadly is still in a state of disrepair.

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