In the center of Vietnam is the city of Hue, which had once been the capital city of the country. With it’s palaces and temples still intact, it is also now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Perfume River runs through the city and the day we got there, a sudden rainfall overflowed the water into the streets. Locals were used to such flooding and life went on as usual:
First stop after our arrival was to the Mandarin Cafe for a bowl of pho and a banh khoai, the rice cakes of the royals:
The coolest part of this cafe was the art work – photographs of everyday life and everyday people against the beautiful backdrop of Vietnam.
Tuk Tuk anyone?
Heading up to the top of the gate to a structure known as the Citadel,
the view was majestic:
The old bell and drum are still played out to the courtyard:
The details of the palace are still pretty preserved:
At the center of the compound is the Can Chanh Palace:
Inside here is the golden throne,which you weren’t allowed to take pictures of:
I loved the details of the garden:
Behind the palace are the Halls of Mandarins, which had been where official palace business was conducted:
The surrounding courtyards were beautiful, even when they are drowned in water:
Heading out of the palace, I saw this little boy fishing:
Our next stop was the Thien Mu Pagoda, an historic temple in the city of Hue:
It was raining pretty hard when we got there, as we all tried to get out of the rain and see the buddha statues inside:
There was a beautiful bonsai garden on the grounds, which made it peaceful to walk around even in the rain:
On the outskirts of town, we went to visit the Tu Duc Tombs
created for Emperor Tu Duc.
The Luu Khiem Lake sits in the middle of these grounds:
Over the lake sits Xung Khiem Pavilion, where the Emperor would read poetry to his concubines:
Here is where the emperor lies:
Up top is the Hoa Khiem Temple, which is where the royals worshipped:
Can’t believe all that for a burial ground!!!
Back at the hotel, we were met by a woman dressed in traditional clothing playing a zither:
And we toasted the day with a glass of Vietnamese white wine:
But nonetheless, a great day in Hue!