Royal Tomb Hue: Discover A Timeless Elegance Adventure

Exploring the royal tomb is one of the most captivating things to do to feel The Essence of Hue. This blog will guide you how to immerse yourself in the fascinating stories that surround these majestic resting places. Get ready to discover the Royal Tombs of Hue with Indochina Voyages and witness the timeless beauty of these Heritages of Vietnam’s History.

Khai Dinh Tomb
One of the most vibrant Royal Tomb

7 Must-see Royal Tombs in Hue

There are seven royal tombs in Hue, which were built for the Nguyen Dynasty emperors. In there, nestled to the southeast of the Hue Citadel, across the serene Perfume River, lie six exquisite royal tombs, with an additional tomb situated on the same side.

While all seven tombs hold significant cultural value, three in particular – Minh Mang, Tu Duc, and Khai Dinh – have garnered greater popularity due to their remarkable preservation and convenient accessibility.

However, the remaining four tombs – Gia Long, Thieu Tri, Duc Duc, and Dong Khanh – though equally captivating, are often overlooked by tour companies for the sake of convenience. Yet remain open to Hue’s curious tourists who seek a deeper exploration of the city’s regal heritage

Minh Mang Tomb

  • Year Built: Began in 1840 and was completed in 1843.
  • Location: On the west bank of the Perfume River, approximately 12 kilometers from the Hue City center.
  • Ticket Entrance Price: VND 150,000 (approximately US $6.70).

The Minh Mang Tomb is a masterpiece of imperial architecture and natural beauty. This final resting place of Emperor Minh Mang, who reigned from 1820 to 1841, was known for his strict adherence to Confucian principles and his dedication to expanding the empire’s territory. the tomb reflects the emperor’s dignified rule. Its highlights include the grand triple-arched gate, serene gardens, and the picturesque Lake of the Stele. The tomb’s harmonious blend of nature and architecture creates a tranquil atmosphere that captivates visitors.

Tu Duc Tomb

  • Year Built: Began in 1864 and was completed in 1867.
  • Location: 8 kilometers southeast of the Hue City Center.
  • Ticket Entrance Price: VND 150,000 (approximately US $6.70).

The Tu Duc Tomb stands as a testament to the artistic and poetic sensibilities of Emperor Tu Duc, who reigned from 1848 to 1883. He was passionate about literature and composed numerous poems during his reign. Nestled in a picturesque valley, the tomb features lush gardens, serene lakes, and intricate temple-like structures. One of the highlights is the Luu Khiem Lake, where the emperor used to compose poetry in solitude. The tomb’s serene ambiance and beautiful architecture make it a must-visit destination for history and nature enthusiasts alike.

Tu Duc Tomb

Khai Dinh Tomb

  • Year BuiltBegan in 1920 and was completed in 1931.
  • Location: 10 kilometers southwest of the Hue City Center.
  • Ticket Entrance Price: VND 150,000 (approximately $6.70).

The Khai Dinh Tomb is a captivating fusion of Vietnamese and European architectural styles, built in honor of Emperor Khai Dinh, who reigned from 1916 to 1925. Perched on a hillside, the tomb’s exterior features intricate mosaics, while the interior is adorned with elaborate decorations. Don’t miss the awe-inspiring main hall, which houses a striking statue of the emperor. As you ascend the steps, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.

Khai Dinh Tomb
Khai Dinh Tomb


For those dedicated to experiencing all three prominent tombs, a convenient package rate of VND 280,000 (approximately $12.50) is available. Furthermore, by purchasing a combination ticket that grants access to both the tombs and the Citadel, you can take advantage of a package rate of VND 360,000 (around $16.10). These cost-effective options offer an opportunity to fully immerse oneself in the grandeur of Hue’s royal history.

Gia Long Tomb

  • Year Built: Began in 1814 and was completed in 1820.
  • Location: Approximately 17 kilometers east of the Hue City Center.
  • Ticket Entrance Price: VND 80,000 (approximately $3.60).

The Gia Long Tomb is the final resting place of Emperor Gia Long, the founder of the Nguyen Dynasty and who ruled from 1802 to 1820. Despite its simplicity, the tomb’s historical significance and serene surroundings make it a must-see attraction. Take a leisurely stroll through the peaceful gardens and reflect upon the emperor’s contributions to Vietnamese history. The tomb’s tranquil ambiance and natural beauty provide a peaceful escape from the bustling city.

Thieu Tri Tomb

  • Year Built: Began in 1848 and was completed in 1852.
  • Location: 8 kilometers southeast of the Hue City center.
  • Ticket Entrance Price: VND 40,000 (approximately $1.80).

This is a hidden gem that showcases the simplicity and elegance of Vietnamese design. Built-in honor of Emperor Thieu Tri, who reigned from 1841 to 1847. This emperor is remembered for his commitment to simplicity and elegance. That’s why the tomb exudes a sense of serenity. Surrounded by lush greenery, it features traditional architectural elements, delicate stone carvings, and serene gardens.

Duc Duc Tomb

  • Year Built: Construction of the tomb was completed in 1888.
  • Location: 8 kilometers southeast of the Hue City Center.
  • No entrance fee.

The Duc Duc Tomb holds historical significance, despite being closed to the public. It is dedicated to Emperor Duc Duc, who had a brief reign (only 3 days) but left a lasting impact. Besides, this is also the place to worship 2 other kings, Duy Tan Emperor and Thanh Thai Emperor. Located near the Thieu Tri Tomb, its modest yet meaningful presence serves as a reminder of Vietnam’s imperial past.

Dong Khanh Tomb

  • Year Built: Began in 1917 and was completed in 1923.
  • Location: 7 kilometers southwest of the Hue City center.
  • Ticket Entrance Price: VND 40,000 (approximately $1.80).

The Dong Khanh Tomb is a solemn and serene resting place dedicated to Emperor Dong Khanh, who reigned from 1885 to 1889 and is remembered for his efforts to modernize the country and improve education. The tomb’s architecture resembles a temple, adorned with intricate porcelain decorations and beautiful sculptures. As you wander through the peaceful gardens, you’ll have the opportunity to reflect upon the emperor’s legacy and the historical significance of this majestic site.

If you are planning to see all seven tombs in Hue, a whole day should be set aside. While if you are only seeing the three top tombs, visiting the Royal Tombs can be completed in one day.

Magnificent Royal Tomb
Magnificent Royal Tomb in Hue

Best way to discover

There are two ways to discover Royal Tomb Hue on your own.

Cyclo or Xe Om

Even though being among the most annoyingly persistent in Vietnam, cyclo (rickshaw) and xe om (motorbike) drivers in Hue do offer great value, taking you from one tomb to another and sometimes providing half-accurate touring services. With waiting time included, renting a cyclo may set you back about $8 for a single afternoon tour or about VND 30,000 an hour (about $1.50 in USD). For one whole afternoon tour, it costs about $12-14.

Before setting off on the trip, agree on your price and make sure you are negotiating in the right currency ensure the amount negotiated covers the return trip to protect yourself from any negotiating tricks.

Cyclo for afternoon royal tomb tour
Cyclo for afternoon royal tomb tour

Bike Rental

You can hire a bicycle for about US$1 a day or a motorbike for about US$5 a day from many hotels down the main tourist stretch at Hung Vuong Street if you feel you can hack the chaotic motorbike traffic in Vietnam. While you have the vehicle in your possession, be prepared to hand over your passport.

Package Tours in Hue

You can enjoy the Hue tourist scene in comfort in a typical tour package consisting of a trip to the Thien Mu Pagoda and the Hue Citadel, together with a trip to the three most popular Hue tombs in the itinerary before ending with a scenic dragon boat ride down the romantic Perfume River through some tour companies such as Sinh Tourist. In the package, lunch is generally included.

The Thien Mu Pagoda, the Purple Forbidden City, three tombs, and a lunch break in between should be included in a full-day tour. As you will only end up too tired and harassed to enjoy the trip, tours with more stops included actually have less value for money.

Not including admission to the tombs, each tour costs each person about $10-12.

Package Tour in Hue
Thien Mu Pagoda and Royal Complex as a package tour in Hue

Is there anything that needs to be reminded?

Royal Tombs Hue holds significant historical value for Vietnam. To ensure a respectful and enjoyable experience, please take note of a few key things:

  • Respect the Cultural Significance: Show respect by observing the rules and guidelines, maintaining silence in sacred areas, and refraining from any behavior that may disrupt the tranquil atmosphere.
  • Dress Appropriately: As a mark of respect, it is advisable to dress modestly when visiting the tombs. Opt for clothing that covers the shoulders and knees, and avoid wearing revealing or inappropriate attire.
  • Follow Photography Guidelines: Photography is usually allowed within the tombs, but be mindful of any specific rules. Respect any restricted areas where photography is prohibited and avoid using flash to preserve delicate artifacts and structures.
  • Preserve the Environment: Help in the preservation of these historical sites by not littering or causing any damage.
  • Observe Visitor Regulations: Pay attention to any instructions or signage provided at the entrance or within the tombs. These may include specific visiting hours, areas with restricted access, or guidelines for guided tours. By following these regulations, you can contribute to the preservation of the tombs and have the best possible visit.

In conclusion, the Royal Tomb Hue offer a captivating journey into Vietnam’s imperial history. For a seamless and memorable trip to Hue and other destinations in Vietnam, don’t hesitate to reach out to Indochina Voyages. Embark on a cultural adventure and create cherished memories exploring the royal tombs of Hue and beyond.

Safe travels and enjoy your exploration of Hue’s historical treasures!

From Indochina Voyages Team

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