Julie Vietnam 14 Comments

Hue, located in central Vietnam, was home to the Nguyen dynasty and it was the capital of Vietnam until 1945. The Imperial City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is what attracts visitors to the city of Hue. Scattered along the Perfume River sits the tombs of past emperors.

We spent several days in Hue. We toured the Imperial City, watched as people transported huge chrysanthemums and kumquat trees on the backs of their motorbikes for Tet, and were even in town for Valentine’s Day. We had no idea the Vietnamese celebrated Valentine’s Day until we saw people selling roses and boxes of chocolate in small stands set up along the streets.

Hue, Vietnam in Photos


Entering the Imperial City


Entering Imperial City

The Hue Citadel


Hue Imperial City

The Imperial City


Vietnamese Couple

A Vietnamese couple just outside of the Citadel.


Vietnamese Couple 2



Inside the Imperial City


Crumbling Gate

Crumbling gate


Marijuana in Vietnam

Marijuana growing in the Imperial City


Julie Tyler and Kara



Tyler Rivenbark

Tyler in front of another crumbling wall. Hue was the site of intense battles during the Vietnam War and because of this, the Imperial City and the city of Hue saw a lot of destruction.


Hue Gate

Gate into the Imperial City


To the Gift Shop

To the souvenir shop


Walking in Hue

Walking the streets of Hue


Valentines Day in Vietnam

Valentine’s Day in Vietnam



Chickens for sale


Arnold in Hue

Arnold Schwarzenegger in Hue


Shopping for Tet

Chrysanthemums and decorations for Tet


Street Scene Hue

Street scene in Hue


Girl on a Motorbike

In Hue

Hue Motorbike


Street Signs

Street signs

Where We Stayed

The Hue Holiday Diamond Hotel. This was a clean, quiet, no-frills hotel within walking distance of many of the main sites of Hue. The staff was friendly, the WiFi worked relatively well, and we were served breakfast every morning.

Planning a trip to Vietnam? Read all of our articles in our Vietnam Travel Guide.

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Hue Vietnam in Photos


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Comments 14

  1. Hi Jane! My hometown is Hue! I came across this post as I was wondering around in the blog. I’m so happy to hear that you are planning to visit Hue. From Diamond Hotel where Julie stayed, it is possible to walk to the Imperial Palace, yet it usually takes about 40 mins or so depending on your speed. That’s being said, Diamond Hotel’s location is wonderful as it is close to Le Loi Street, a long and beautiful street that is comparable to Paris’ Champs-Élysées. Most good hotels are on the Southern part of the city (with respect to the Huong/Perfume River), so it usually takes a bit of time to walk to the Imperial Palace. But you can always take taxi or travel on Xich lo. Anyway, welcome to Vietnam! Hope your trip go well!

  2. We are in the process of booking our hotel in Hue for next April. We are wondering if you walked to the Forbidden City and Citadel from the hotel that you stayed at. If you walked how long did it take or did you use local transport? It has been enjoyable reading what your family did in the towns that we are also going to. Lots of great ideas (: Thanks

    1. Post

      We walked to the Forbidden City and the Citadel from our hotel. If I recall correctly, it took about 20 minutes one way. Tuk-tuks are available throughout town and they are very cheap. You could always hire one one-way if you don’t feel like walking. Just hail one from the street…super easy! Have fun in Vietnam! Cheers, Julie

  3. Hi, thank you for your article, I’m going to Vietnam in April and want to go straight from Ho Chi Minh to Hue. I read a post related to hoi an in http://journeyonair.com/ They say that cyclo (“xich lo” or something else) is another specialty in Hue. Have you tried it? they also say that “ca hue” is really famous, but i have no idea where to enjoy it? Can you give me some pieces of advice?

    1. Post

      We did not try cyclo in Hue. When I googled “Ca Hue” the only thing I could find is that this is a form of classical music. I am not at all an expert in Vietnamese food. We tried the local dishes when we were in town, but we were also limited in where we could eat because of our son’s peanut allergy. I dream about returning to Vietnam one day and immersing myself in the food here. It is amazing and I miss it now that we are home. Good luck finding more information! Cheers, Julie

  4. Hi! This is very informative!
    My husband and I will be in Vietnam during Tet next year and I’ve been trying to figure out where I should spend those holidays…
    Are any of the sights in Old Town accessible and are the restaurants open then?

    1. Post

      I can’t personally comment if the restaurants are open in Hue during the main days of Tet. We were in Hanoi during this time. In Hanoi, may things (including museums) were closed for about 4 days, but we did not have any problems finding restaurants that were open. Have you read our post about being in Vietnam for Tet? It may help answer some of your questions. But we really enjoyed being in Vietnam during the entire “season” of Tet. It can make travel and sightseeing a little more difficult, but what you get in return is a chance to see this important holiday in Vietnam. Cheers, Julie

    1. Post

      There is a lot to see and do in each city, so really you need at least one day each for each of them. I think with one day you do not have enough time to visit Hue and Hoi An. – Julie

  5. Hi,
    I’m in the midst of planning 28 days in Vietnam and am now focussed on Hue. I’ve enjoyed reading your blog. Just wondering if you journeyed to the DMZ and temples in and around Hue while you were there?

    1. Post

      Hello. No, we did not visit the DMZ or the temples. We only had a day and a half in Hue and honestly, at that point in time, we just needed a break from sightseeing. We saw the main sights in town, tried several restaurants, and just relaxed. Cheers, Julie

  6. Loving Reading your blog, especially as I plan a trip to SE Asia.
    How many days did you stay in Hue and is it better to spend more time in Hoi An?
    Many thanks

    1. Post

      Hello Julia. We spent two and a half days in Hue and three and a half days in Hoi An. If I did it again, I’d spend at least five days in Hoi An. We just loved this city, riding around on motorbikes, going to the beach, and going up to Da Nang. Two days (for us) was perfect in Hue. The half day for each town was the transfer day between the two of them. Happy planning!! Julie

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