Thai Hoa Palace – Nguyen Dynasty Magnificent Architecture

Thai Hoa Palace - Culture Pham Travel


Thai Hoa Palace is a historical monument located inside Hue Imperial City. Back in the day, it was chosen as a place to celebrate court rituals like significant coronations. Moreover, Thai Hoa Palace is also considered a location to welcome ambassadors from other countries as well as for special events of the royal family.

Especially, Thai Hoa Palace area is up to 1,360 square meters. It possesses two big lakes leading to the entrance palace directly. The courtyard and palace are surrounded by green trees, which not only creates a fresh vibe but a majestic feeling as well.

Today’s article will introduce you to Thai Hoa Palace Hue. Let’s take a look to learn more about one of the most unique architectures under the Nguyen Dynasty!

After a wonderful time in Hue, you may need our private car transfer from Hue to other neighboring cities, such as:

The Palace Name Meaning

The palace was named “Thái Hoà” by Emperor Gia Long, with great meaning. “Thái” means “large,” while “Hoà” means “harmony,” which reflects a wish to gain the harmony of all things in the world. It is also referred to as the “Throne Palace” or “Palace of Supreme Harmony.”

The Nguyen Dynasty’s Emperors believed that once everything was set in harmony, it would bring flourish, wealth, happiness, and development to the whole country.

Indeed, this title, “Thai Hoa,” embodies a deep-rooted manifestation of Vietnamese people – permanent harmony, the strong base for long-standing proliferation. After tons of ups and downs, Vietnam nowadays is finally approaching sustainable growth, like the emperors’ wishes delivered to the palace’s name.

Thai Hoa Palace History

The history of Thai Hoa Palace began in 1805. Under the Nguyen Dynasty, after three years of enthronement, Emperor Gia Long started the construction of Thai Hoa Palace on February 2nd, 1805. Eight months later, in October 1805, the palace was officially completed.

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Nevertheless, Minh Mang Emperor decided to move the palace to the south to rebuild it larger under the citadel’s reconstruction decision in 1983. Then, the palace was reconstructed on a large scale to prepare for Emperor Khai Dinh’s 40th birthday anniversary. It took about one year to finish everything.

Moreover, later on, Thai Hoa Palace underwent several restorations under the reign of Emperor Thanh Thai and Bao Dai. For instance, there were restorations in 1960, 1970, 1981, 1985, and 1992. After all, the palace ended up with the appearance it has today.

Best Thai Hoa Palace Travel Guides

How To Get To Thai Hoa Palace?

Thai Hoa Palace is a part of the Hue Citadel included in the Hue Monuments Complex. It means that the Thai Hoa Palace location is inside the historic citadel. You have to find and enter the citadel before reaching Thai Hoa Palace.

There are a lot of ways to reach Thai Hoa Palace, or the Hue Citadel, such as taxis, car rentals, tours, motorcycles, bicycles, or walking. If you stay near Truong Tien Bridge crossing the Perfume River Hue, you can walk as the distance is quite short. However, if you live somewhere else at a greater distance, a vehicle is a better idea.

Take the Phu Bai International Airport to Hue Historic Citadel map as a preference.

In addition, we especially recommend you book our Hue City tour by private car, a high-quality private car service. It provides travelers with on-request service and English-speaking drivers at a reasonable price. Moreover, you will be comfortable with a personal car space and a customizable schedule.

If you plan to fly to Hue City, you can refer to our Hue airport transfer as a safe means of transportation. Besides, you can book our tours with private cars and tour guides, such as Hue City tour 1 day, Hue Imperial City Walking Tour, Hue DMZ tour, or Hue Royal Tombs tour to experience even more of Hue City.

Opening Hours And Entrance Fees

As mentioned, Thai Hoa Palace is a building inside Hue Citadel. Thus, visitors interested in this palace should buy tickets to enter the Hue historic citadel first.

  • Hue Imperial City’s opening hours: from 08:00 to 17:00, every day of the week
  • The entrance price: 200,000 VND per adult (8.5 USD); 40,000 VND per child (2 USD)

Thai Hoa Palace - Culture Pham Travel

What To Explore?

Hue Imperial City is favored by many travelers for many reasons. The biggest reason must be charming vintage constructions like Thai Hoa Palace. This ancient Hue Royal Palace hides several intriguing gems for visitors, attracting them to come and see it in person.

Admire Thai Hoa’s Unique Architecture

Once the palace appears in front of you, large entrance doors will come as a surprise. Its main decorations are elaborate carvings of dragons, suns, and clouds. On the top of those gates is a panel with the palace’s name written in the old character system. After that, you set foot in the main hall with the architecture that was once the most typical at the time.

The main hall accommodates a total of 80 ironwood pillars, functioning as the support for a massive roof. Similar to patterns on the gates, each pillar shows carvings of stylish clouds and golden dragons. Those symbols represent the emperors and their great dimensions, demonstrating elegance, royalty, and power.

Especially, the Thai Hoa Palace’s total area is up to 1,360 square meters. With such scale, it boasts two big lakes leading directly to the entrance palace. In general, the courtyard and palace are full of green trees arranged neatly. Such surroundings create a fresh vibe and a majestic sense of nature.

Plus, visitors can explore the sizeable main hall behind. It includes 5 compartments and 2 wings. The front house has 7 compartments and 2 wings. It opens a warm and luxurious space of wooden architectural pieces and Vietnamese royal colors—red and golden. It promises to give sightseers a nostalgic feeling of a glorious past.

Another unique feature is that Thai Hoa Palace follows the “double-house” structure, known as “trùng thiềm điệp ốc” architecture in Vietnamese. It is the most classic architectural style under the Nguyen Dynasty that you can see in several other monuments. This style can create a connection between each house’s roofs by overlapping, but it seems separated when looking from the outside.

Discover The Decorating Secrets

It will be a big regret if you do not admire the beauty of Thai Hoa decoration, which carries a special meaning. Those with a good eye for details will realize that there are a lot of palace parts with the appearance of numbers 9 and 5.

Most importantly, it not only appears in the palace interior but also the exterior. For example, the palace’s outside staircases have 9 or 5 steps. There are 9 dragons on the rooftop, and the main hall has a nine-dragon gold throne.

Obviously, this is not a coincidence. People at that time believed that 5 and 9 were holy numbers. The number 5 is referred to as the universe’s center between land and heaven. And the number 5 represents spiritual perfection as well as development.

Wander Around Hue Citadel

As we mentioned before, Thai Hoa Palace is just a part of Hue Citadel. Hence, you will have a chance to explore other places inside the colossal Imperial City of Hue.

We recommend Dien Tho Palace, Ngo Mon Gate, Hue Flag Tower, and Truong Sanh Palace as the best options. They’re incredible for history enthusiasts who love to gain more knowledge of the history, culture, and customs of the Nguyen Dynasty and Royal Family.

Besides, you will see royal gardens, theaters, and so many more highlighted constructions that are worth a stroll by. It would be wonderful to wander around this time-honored site and feel the historic environment here.

Thai Hoa Palace - Culture Pham Travel

Try Hue’s Traditional Specialties

Last but not least, there are many stalls selling Hue’s specialties, such as banh beo, bun hen, che, etc. Besides, there is a kind of candy that you can buy and bring home as presents for your family and relatives: “Me Xung.”

Thai Hoa Palace - Culture Pham Travel

Additionally, Bun Hen and Bun Bo Hue are must-try dishes thanks to their representative ingredients and culinary styles. As the kingdom of cuisines, a food tour around Hue City promises not to let you be disappointed. See the Hue Street Food Tour for more.

Travel Tips

Here are some tips for you before planning a trip to Hue Imperial City:

  • Remember to dress politely because Thai Hoa Palace, or Hue Citadel, is an important historical and cultural monument. You must respect the emperors and the solemnity here.
  • Some places do not allow taking photos. Please notice the signs placed at the relics and obey them strictly.

Thai Hoa Palace - Culture Pham Travel

  • Avoid touching objects.
  • Take notice of special areas or paths that limit the number of people visiting or walking in.
  • You may get lost due to the large scale of Hue Citadel. Hence, we suggest you prepare a map to avoid getting lost.
  • Please protect the environment. Don’t throw trash on the streets.


In conclusion, Thai Hoa Palace is a must-visit destination in Hue City, Vietnam. This historical monument showcases the grandeur and elegance of the Nguyen Dynasty and its significance in Vietnamese history. From the intricate carvings on the entrance gates to the unique architecture of the main hall, Thai Hoa Palace never fails to impress visitors.

If you’re planning to explore Hue City, don’t forget to add Thai Hoa Palace to your list and immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of Vietnam.

That’s all the information that we would like to share with you about Hue Thai Hoa Palace. Culture Pham Travel hopes that this article can provide you with the best travel guide to the Palace of Supreme Harmony in Hue.

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