Asia Vietnam Vietnam Guide Things To Do Essentials All Vietnam 7 Must-Visit Royal Tombs in Hue, Vietnam 7 Royal Tombs for 9 Nguyen Emperors Written by Michael Aquino Facebook Twitter Mike Aquino is a travel writer covering Southeast Asia and Hong Kong. He lives in Manila full-time, but is perfectly at home in a Singapore hawker center. Tripsavvy's Editorial Guidelines Michael Aquino Updated 06/26/19 Share Pin Email Keren Su / Getty Images There are seven known royal tombs in Hue, six to the southeast of the Hue Citadel on the other side of the Perfume River and a single tomb on the same side. Of these seven tombs, three are significantly more popular compared to the rest, due to their relative good condition and better accessibility. These are the tombs of Minh Mang, Tu Duc, and Khai Dinh. The four other royal tombs – those of Gia Long, Thieu Tri, Duc Duc, and Dong Khanh – can be visited by Hue tourists, although many tour companies leave them out of the itinerary for convenience’s sake. The individual entry fees for each tomb are listed at the end of each description, but if you're committed to visiting all the three tombs in Hue, you can pay a package rate of VND 280,000 (about $12.50). Buy a combination ticket that also includes access to the Citadel, and you can pay a package rate of VND 360,000 (about $16.10). 01 of 07 Minh Mang Mike Aquino View Map Address QL49, Hương Thọ, Hương Trà, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions Phone +84 234 3523 237 Web Visit website Minh Mang’s royal tomb reflects the emperor’s staunch traditionalism, laid out in a classical Chinese scheme with a symmetry that no other royal tomb approaches. The forty structures within the royal tomb complex lie within an oval, walled compound, bisected by a central path that contains the salutation court, stele pavilion, and the emperor’s own tomb. The emperor ordered the construction of his tomb but did not live to complete it; he died in 1840 and was only laid to rest in his tomb in 1843, when his son had completed the tomb for him. Date of Construction: 1841-1843Distance from Hue City Center: 7 miles downriver from HueAdmission Fee: VND 100,000 for adults, VND 20,000 for children below 13 years of age 02 of 07 Tu Duc Mike Aquino View Map Address thôn Thượng Ba, Thành phố Huế, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions The opulence of Tu Duc’s tomb stands in contrast to the tragic length of his life. Tu Duc reigned longest among the Nguyens, dying childless after 35 years on the throne and cursing the French for their growing influence. Tu Duc is the only emperor who moved his household into his own tomb, building a Forbidden City of his own on the grounds. Some believe this was due to the smallpox that rendered him infertile; in fact, of the emperors who built their tombs in Hue, Tu Duc is the only emperor who wrote his own stele, as he had no son to do this essential duty. Date of Construction: 1864-1867Distance from Hue City Center: 4 miles downriver from HueAdmission Fee: VND 100,000 for adults, VND 20,000 for children below 13 years of age 03 of 07 Khai Dinh Mike Aquino View Map Address Khải Định, Thành phố Huế, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions The tomb of Emperor Khai Dinh took 11 years to complete. His enduring unpopularity is due in part to his heavy taxation on peasants to finance the construction of this edifice. Khai Dinh ordered a tomb that had heavy French elements within its design. Unlike those of his predecessors, Khai Dinh’s tomb is built like a monument: it consists mainly of concrete, preceded by a wrought-iron triple gate. Inside, guests will find a riotous battle between Eastern and Western design elements, colorfully decorated with pieces of broken glass and porcelain. Date of Construction: 1920-1931Distance from Hue City Center: 6 miles downriver from HueAdmission Fee: VND 100,000 for adults, VND 20,000 for children below 13 years of age 04 of 07 Gia Long CEphoto, Uwe Aranas / CC-BY-SA-3.0 View Map Address Hương Thọ, Hương Trà, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions Despite Gia Long’s status as the first of the Nguyen emperors, his tomb’s inaccessibility and his own unpopularity in Vietnamese history make his royal tomb one of the least visited in Hue. The local government has let the site go to seed, allowing the damage from the war to go unrepaired. Gia Long’s tomb is notable for being the template that all the other tombs have followed. Date of Construction: 1814-1820Distance from Hue City Center: 25 miles outside of HueAdmission Fee: VND 40,000 for adults, free for children below 13 years of age Continue to 5 of 7 below. 05 of 07 Thieu Tri Lê Tấn Lộc / Creative Commons View Map Address Thủy Bằng, Hương Thủy, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions The son of Minh Mang and the father of Tu Duc, this emperor ordered a more unprepossessing tomb compared to his more grandiose relations. Its most notable architectural element is a covered bridge that resembles the iconic bridge in Hoi An. His brief reign meant that his tomb was still incomplete upon his death. For a time, the emperor was interred in the Long An Temple within the Citadel (now the Museum of Antiquities). Date of Construction: 1848Distance from Hue City Center: 5 miles downriver from HueAdmission Fee: VND 40,000 for adults, free for children below 13 years of age 06 of 07 Duc Duc, Thanh Thai, and Duy Tan Travel Ink / Getty Images View Map Address Duy Tân, An Cựu, Thành phố Huế, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions The Emperor Duc Duc shares his comparatively modest tomb with two other emperors who had fallen foul of the French colonial authorities and, as a consequence, were denied dignified resting places of their own. Today, the Emperors Thanh Thai and Duy Tan rest behind the Long An Temple on Duc Duc’s tomb grounds. Inside the temple are three altars set up to commemorate the three emperors on the grounds. Date of Construction: 1883Distance from Hue City Center: about 1.44 miles from HueAdmission Fee: VND 40,000 for adults, free for children below 13 years of age 07 of 07 Dong Khanh Lưu Ly / Creative Commons View Map Address 8 Đoàn Nhữ Hải, Thủy Xuân, Thành phố Huế, Thừa Thiên Huế, Vietnam Get directions Phone +84 234 3121 649 The smallest of the known royal tombs in Hue, Dong Khanh’s tomb is actually a repurposed memorial temple. Dong Khanh himself had ordered the construction of a temple to commemorate his father’s memory, but his successor Thanh Thai converted this temple into Dong Khanh’s tomb. Dong Khanh was a puppet emperor controlled by the French; his tomb, as a result, shows a distinct French influence, with stained glass windows and terra-cotta reliefs mixing with traditional Eastern design influences. Date of Construction: 1889Distance from Hue City Center: about 2.5 miles downriver from HueAdmission Fee: VND 40,000 for adults, free for children below 13 years of age Was this page helpful? Thanks for letting us know! Share Pin Email Tell us why! Submit Minh Mang's Royal Tomb in Hue, Vietnam is a Masterpiece of Balance Learn About A Lost Empire in this Walking Tour of Hue Citadel in Vietnam The Tu Duc Royal Tomb in Hue, Vietnam is Tinged with Tragedy How to Spend 8 Days in Vietnam Hue in Central Vietnam: an Inside Look at Vietnam's Old Royal Capital These Are the Hottest Festivals Across Vietnam Exploring Khai Dinh's Tomb - An Unloved Emperor in Hue, Vietnam MGM Grand: The Complete Guide Keeping Busy in Hanoi, Vietnam Celebrate Tet Like a Local in Vietnam The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy of Hue, Vietnam's Thien Mu Pagoda 13 Essential Things to Do in Vung Tau, Vietnam Vietnam's Quirky Water Puppet Shows - What's Their Secret? Go Back in Time at these UNESCO Cultural Sites in Southeast Asia 8 Neighborhoods to Explore in Ho Chi Minh City What Are All the Transportation Options in Hanoi?