Top 21 Best Things To Do In Hue Vietnam 2024

Best Things To Do In Hue 2023-Culture Pham Travel

Top best things to do in Hue are the best tours and things you must visit, enjoy, and explore if you have ever traveled to Hue city. Below are the most useful recommendations in Hue for you!

Best Things To Do In Hue Imperial City

Hue was the imperial capital city of 9 Nguyen lords from 1558 and then of the Nguyen Dynasty- the last dynasty in Vietnam from 1802 to 1945.

things to do in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel

For more than 4 centuries, Hue was an extensive complex of special royal architectural and cultural relics. In 1993, the Hue imperial complex was honorably recognized by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage Site. Thus, the city has become a must-see destination in Vietnam.

Best Things To Do In Hue-Culture Pham Travel

On the northern bank of the Perfume River in the middle of the city. The magnificent imperial citadel emerges, showing the absolute power of the Nguyen dynasty. Additionally, the citadel’s royal palaces, monuments, and beautiful landscaping retain their imperial solemnity.

1. Hue Imperial Citadel

As you know, the total area of the Hue imperial citadel comprises 3 sections of 520 hectares.

The first one is the Citadel- the protecting area. Next, the second is the Royal city– the working area of the Emperor, civil servants, and military servants. And the last one is Forbidden city- The residence of the Emperor, the royal family, and eunuchs.

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Moreover, surrounding in each section, there is a seven-kilometer-long moat for decoration, protection, and to be like air-conditioning.

The architecture of the Imperial Citadel is a mixture between Oriental philosophy and Vietnamese tradition. As you can see, all the main structures are on an axis and very symmetrical. Moreover, the citadel has four main gates. The Noon Gate (Ngo Mon Gate) was the Gate only for the emperor- son of Heaven.

Best Things To Do In Hue-Culture Pham Travel

2. Hue Royal Tombs

If you come to Hue, you should book Hue Tours to visit the majestic tombs of the Nguyen Emperors that are on the West of the Imperial Citadel. Located on hills, facing the Perfume River with perfect Feng Shui.

things to do in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel
Minh Mang tomb

These tombs show the peak of Vietnamese architecture and the Emperor’s power, but each tomb reflects the personality and soul of the Emperor as well. Therefore, exploring fabulous tombs is a must-do when traveling to Hue.

things to do in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel
Khai Dinh tomb

Minh Mang Tomb– the tomb of the second Emperor. Khai Dinh Tomb– The tomb of the 12th Emperor, and Tu Duc Tomb– the tomb of the 4th Emperor. As you know, they all prepared the tombs for themselves before they passed away. Because they thought that, in this life, they were Emperors, after life they would be Emperors again.

Khai Dinh tomb-Culture pham Travel
Khai Dinh tomb – Culture Pham Travel
Moreover, you can learn more about the most fabulous Hue Royal Tombs at TOP HUE ROYAL TOMBS YOU MUST VISIT

2.1. Minh Mang Tomb

The beautiful tomb of the second Emperor of the Nguyen dynasty with the perfect Fengshui. Lies on the Tam Tai Son mountain with a total area of 28 hectares.

things to do at Hue-Culture Pham Travel

Plus, Minh Mang tomb is the perfect place for forever sleep and was also the used in the after-life of the Minh Mang emperor. Thus, to have a deep understanding of the tomb, you can have a look at Minh Mang Royal Tomb

Hue Imperial city - Minh Mang tomb - Hue tours
Minh Mang Tomb

2.2. Khai Dinh Tomb

Next, Khai Dinh Tomb is the fabulous tomb of the 12th Emperor of the Nguyen dynasty. It is the smallest tomb in the tomb system of the Nguyen dynasty. However, it is the most luxurious and beautiful tomb.

things to do at Hue-Culture Pham Travel

Furthermore, the tomb of Khai Dinh is the Top of the inlaid color-glass, ceramics, and porcelain. Hence, Khai Dinh Royal tomb is a must-visit attraction in Hue imperial city.

things to do at Hue-Culture Pham Travel

2.3. Tu Duc Tomb

The Tomb of Tu Duc emperor is a special tomb because there are 2 sections in the tomb of the 4th Emperor of the Nguyen dynasty. The first section was the second residence and the second one is the burial area.

things to do at Hue-Culture Pham Travel

Tu Duc was an unhappy life emperor during his reign since the French first came to Vietnam, so he lost his power. When he was young, he had smallpox, so he could not give birth. Also, the last one is he had a bad reputation for killing his brother.

The tomb of the Tu Duc emperor is the tomb of the artist and poet. To explore the Tu Duc emperor Tomb, please book Hue Tours or read our article Tomb of Tu Duc – The Tomb of Modesty.

Hue Imperial city - Tu Duc tomb - Hue tours

2.4. Imperial Tomb of Dong Khanh

Another tourist attraction in Hue is the tomb of Dong Khanh, also called Tu Lang, which is one of the Nguyen Dynasty’s mausoleum systems.

things to do at Hue-Culture Pham Travel

An exceedingly well-balanced fusion of Asian and European art architecture may be seen in the Dong Khanh Tomb. Additionally, UNESCO listed Dong Khanh Tomb as a World Cultural Heritage Site on 11/12/1993.

3. Tiger arena hue- the unique arena in Asia

Nowadays, in the world, there are 2 arenas still exist, one in Italy and another one in Vietnam, the Tiger Arena Hue. A long time ago, horses were like transportation, elephants were like tanks- the powerful weapon in the military. But in the beginning, elephants didn’t know how to fight so military-trained elephants know how to fight by fighting with the tigers.
Tiger Arena Hue- Culture Pham Travel
Tiger Arena Hue – Hue city
However, at that time, they cut off the claws and fangs of tigers already to make sure elephants always won. To be safe for the emperor, servants, and mandarins, the Minh Mang emperor built the Tiget arena Hue in 1836. Thus, to understand in detail this unique arena in Hue, Vietnam, please read: Tiger Arena Hue: Where Tigers and Elephants Battled to the Death.

4. Huyen Tran Princess Temple

Huyen Tran Cultural Center – Huyen Tran Princess Temple is a unique spiritual tourist destination that attracts many tourists. Visitors can understand more about the history of Huyen Tran princess – daughter of emperor Tran Nhan Tong and empress Kham Tu when visiting this place.

Huyen Tran Princess Temple-Culture Pham Travel

With an ample area of 28.5 hectares, Huyen Tran Cultural Center is a complex of temples and shrines with a unique landscape system. Thus, visitors can enjoy the fresh air, learn more about the culture and offer incense to show gratitude – pray for peace and luck. Hence, it is one of the best things to do in Hue.

5. Hue Museum of Royal Antiquities

Hue Museum of Royal Antiquities is a museum under the management of Hue Monuments Conservation Center. This building is the Long An palace, which was built in 1845 under the emperor Thieu Tri.

thing to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel

The museum’s main building is wooden, with 128 precious wooden pillars. On the pillars are carvings of four spirits: Dragon – Qilin – Turtoise – Phoenix, and more than 1000 poems in Chinese characters. Significantly, the Hue Museum of Royal Antiquities is the place to keep the complete artifacts about the Nguyen Dynasty and the life of the ancient dynasty.

top things to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel

Therefore, the museum currently stores and displays about 9,000 antiques from the Nguyen Dynasty’s court and nearly 100 Champa antiquities. Plus, managing nearly 3,000 other antiques on display at palaces, mausoleums, and temples belonging to the complex of Hue monuments.

6. Perfume River and Truong Tien Bridge

Perfume river Hue-Culture Pham Travel

A long time ago, we cared very much about Feng Shui, so an important part of Hue’s attractiveness is the beauty of the Perfume River and Ngu Binh mountain. Following Nguyen Xuan Hoa, a local of Hue, said: “The Perfume River is a natural wonder of Hue city”. It has rare romantic beauty.

thing to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel
Perfume river

Its green waters meander across the plains, through forests and villages like the beautiful hair of a virgin girl before entering the Tam Giang Lagoon”. At night, the Perfume river is also extremely shimmering with lights. Hence, you can walk around the riverbank or at the ironwood bridge in the Perfume river to relax.

thing to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel
Perfume river by night

Following what the Emperor did, taking a dragon boat on the Perfume River to enjoy the romantic sights of the city while listening to royal court music and local folk songs is a wonderful experience. In addition, Truong Tien Bridge over the Perfume River is another symbol of Hue.

Hue dragon boat trip-Culture Pham Travel

Moreover, the Truong Tien Bridge and the Perfume River have been great sources of inspiration for poets and songwriters.

Mr. Phan Thuan An- a famous Hue cultural researcher said for Hue people. Truong Tien Bridge is the highlight architectural site of the city. It is strongly imprinted inside the hearts of Hue people.

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Truong Tien bridge at night

Nowadays, the Hue imperial city is also famous as a festival city because of its biennial festival which attracts top Vietnamese and foreign performing artists. Authentic architecture, unique landscapes, and delicate gastronomy make Hue become a beautiful and romantic city and a must-visit destination!

top things to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel
Hue dragon boat on the Perfume river

Book Hue Tours at Culture Pham Travel is the best way to enjoy Hue!

7. Bach Ma National Park

On the journey to discover Bach Ma National Park, you can stop at Hai Dai hope, Do Quyen waterfall, Bach Ma Five lakes natural masterpiece, and ancient French villas. Or Bach Ma Village tourist area is located in the buffer zone of Bach Ma National Park.

Do Quyen waterfall-Bach Ma National Park-Culture Pham Travel
Do Quyen waterfall in Bach Ma National Park

Besides, at the foot of the Bach Ma mountain range, there is a large and extremely beautiful Truoi lake. Therefore, you can take a boat and leisurely paddle out in the middle of the stream to admire the beautiful Bach Ma mountains. Then dock at Truc Lam Bach Ma Zen Monastery, located across the lake, to visit this monastery.

8. Hue Foods

As you know, Hue was the residence place of 13 emperors and the capital city of the Nguyen dynasty. Long times ago, in the morning, the emperor had 18 dishes, lunch 36 dishes, and dinner 18 dishes, in some important ceremonies, he had 54 dishes.

Hue food-Culture Pham Travel
Hue noodle soup with beef

Not only for eating but also for smelling and looking. It was like an art. So the food in Hue is the best in Vietnam. Therefore, traveling to Hue city, you must enjoy and taste Hue foods.

As you can see in Hue, there are many kinds of foods and restaurants that serve Vietnamese and Western foods. Some excellent restaurants in Hue we highly recommend are Hanh Local food restaurant at 11 Pho Duc Chinh street; Elegant restaurant at 29 Vo Thi Sau street; Les Jardins de la Carambole restaurant at 32 Dang Tran Con Street.

Hue cuisine-Culture Pham Travel

If you would like to enjoy Hue specialties at many different local food restaurants you should book Hue Street Food Tour at Culture Pham Travel to taste all the best local foods that just can find in Hue. Besides, if you want to cook Hue food, you can book our Hue Cooking Class Tour.

9. Hue imperial city guide

Hue is a city that is rich in history and relics, beautiful landscapes, and delicious foods, so there are many different ways to visit, explore and enjoy Hue. For example, walking to visit Hue imperial city (The Citadel); Renting a scooter to visit the Royal Tombs; abandoned water park, and so on.

places to visit in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel

Additionally, taking a dragon boat to go along the Perfume River to visit the Thien Mu pagoda is a great experience. Nevertheless, if you would like to get a deep history of the Nguyen dynasty Hue and Vietnamese culture, you should book:

Hue pagodas- Hue tours

In Vietnam, Hue is as known as the cradle of Buddhism. There are around 300 pagodas in Hue, and they all are beautiful. Some Hue pagodas are Tu Dam pagoda, Huyen Khong Son Thuong Pagoda, Bao Quoc pagoda, etc.

Thien Mu Pagoda Hue-Culture Pham Travel

However, the 3 oldest and as know as the national pagodas in Hue are Thien Mu pagoda, Tu Hieu Pagoda, and Dieu De pagoda.

10. Book a Hue bicycle rental service

Hue is often regarded as one of the best cities in Vietnam for cycling. There is much less traffic here than in other regions of our country. Hence, you can ride along the poetic Huong River banks while visiting all the major sights that have made Hue renowned.

thing to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel

You can hire a bike and set off on your own, or you can book a Hue countryside tour that will take you around Hue city or into the nearby famous countryside village, such as Thuy Bieu village, Thanh Thuy Chanh village, etc. Hence, riding a bike around Hue is one of the top things to do in Hue that you cannot ignore.

11. Alba Thanh Tan Hot Springs

Another thing to do at Hue is book a private car to Alba Thanh Tan Hot Springs. It is a famous destination in Hue that you should not miss when you have the opportunity to travel to the ancient capital.

top things to do in Hue-Culture Pham Travel

When coming to Alba Thanh Tan Hot Springs, you will enjoy relaxation and comfort with spa treatments. Moreover, it is amusing and energetic when participating in games, such as water park games and adventure games.

Alba Thanh Tan Hot Springs-Culture Pham Travel

Not only resort tourism, but Alba Thanh Tan Hot Springs also attracts adventurous tourists with outdoor sports games such as balancing on a cable (Highwire), freestyle swinging (Zipline), picnic fishing, etc.

12. Bathing At Elephant Springs

Elephant Sproings-Culture Pham Travel

Elephant Springs Hue attracts visitors thanks to the big rock in the shape of a cute elephant and cool natural lakes. When you come here, you can also enjoy delicious food and the famous Hue specialties of the locals here.

13. An Bang Cemetery – City of Ghosts Hue

What’s else? In addition to the Hue attractions above, An Bang cemetery is a unique and strange place you should visit. It is a famous cemetery, considered the most impressively beautiful elaborate and extravagant in Vietnam. The cemetery is located in An Bang coastal fishing village in Vinh An commune, Phu Vang district, Thua Thien Hue province, 35 km east of Hue city.

An Bang cemetery-Culture Pham Travel

An Bang Cemetery is famous not only in Vietnam but also in the world and is called by domestic as well as foreign press “An Bang ghosts city”, “Hue city of ghosts”, “mansion of the dead”, and “paradise tomb”.

city of ghosts Hue-Culture Pham Travel

Most of the tombs of An Bang have a typical design following the tomb of King Khai Dinh. Then transform more or less depending on the preferences of the person requesting the construction. Hence, there are many tombs designed as royal tombs.

14. Hue Festival

Hue Festival is a huge cultural event of Hue City held every two years. There is a week (usually in April, May, or June) for each festival season which is the occasion to honor the cultural and historical values of that Vietnam’s ancient capital city. The first Hue Festival was in 2000.

Hue festival-Culture Pham Travel

At the start of the Hue Festival, Tourists can enjoy colorful and grand opening ceremonies with special performances by several domestic art groups and from other countries. Hence, Hue Festival has been well known as a space of cultural exchange between people in over the world.

things to do in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel

During the Hue festival, there are a lot of cultural events coming about such as the Dialogue of drums and percussion instruments, Massive Street Arts Performances, Art Exhibitions, Hue Poetry Festival, and the Week of Vietnam’s historical films and Hue cuisine festival.

Hue cuisine festival-Culture Pham Travel

Apart from that, you can come and explore some traditional values of Vietnam at the “Oriental night” Show, Gastronomy Quarters, Traditional Kite Flying Festival or watch the “Ao dai” Grand Show, and sporting activities like boat race, human chess, etc. Particularly, many ancient sceneries of the Nguyen Dynasty are also reproduced and provide visitors an insight into Vietnam’s feudal era.

Hue festival-Culture Pham Travel

Besides, some typical events include the Xa Tac Offering Ritual, Nam Giao Offering Ritual, and the Royal Refined Music of Hue, which UNESCO recognized in 2003 as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

Hue Festival is famous as an international festival where cultures of many countries converge together and where Vietnamese traditional and cultural treasures are widely presented to the world.

15. Markets in Hue

As you know, the Vietnamese have a good habit that we will go to markets every morning to buy fresh ingredients to cook for their family. The market is not only the place where people sell and buy things but also a tight community.

Dong Ba market Hue

If you travel to any country, you should visit the markets because, in the markets, you will understand the local life and the soul of the destination. There are many markets in Hue but the biggest is the Dong Ba market.

The open time is from 4 a.m to 6 p.m. You can find out everything you like at Dong Ba even 25 USD Rolex watches.

Hue Nightlife And Things To Do In Hue At Night

16. Lang Co, Thuan An beach, Cau Hai, and Lap An Lagoon

16.1. Lang Co beach

Lang Co beach is one of the most poetic beaches in Vietnam and it was recognized as the most beautiful bay in the world.

Lang Co bay-Culture Pham Travel

Unlike other beaches, Lang co is still a wild beach with over 10km long beach with white sand, pure seawater, and tropical forest in the mountains of Thua Thien Hue province.

Lang Co beach-Culture Pham Travel

Not only attractive of its beauty but Lang Co is also great with various fresh, cheap seafood such as shrimp; snails; oysters; cuttlefish; crabs, and lobsters. Especially, seafood in Lang Co is famous because they are so cheap but super fresh and tasty. Therefore, tourists who come to Lang Co cannot help tasting the delicious seafood here.

16.2. Thuan An beach

Thuan An is the closest beach, just 15 km from Hue city center. It is a very beautiful, peaceful beach in Thua Thien Hue province. If you would like to escape from the busy and noisy life, Thuan An beach is the perfect option.

Thuan An beach-Culture Pham Travel

Not only gorgeous with white fine sands but also the seafood at Thuan An is very fresh, cheap, and tasty. Spending a day at Thuan An beach, you will have a great chance to enjoy the beautiful sunshine and understand the life of local fishermen at Thuan An.

Not only Lang Co and Thuan An beach but there are also a lot of more gorgeous beaches in Hue that will win your heart, to explore them all, please visit:

16.3 Cau Hai Lagoon

Located about 40km southeast of Hue city, Cau Hai Lagoon is the largest freshwater lagoon system in Southeast Asia. The route from Hue city to Cau Hai lagoon is easy to find. Thus, you need to follow the route from Hue to Da Nang along the 1A highway, then in the Phu Loc district, look to the left, and you will see the beautiful Cau Hai lagoon.

Things to do in Hue- Culture Pham Travel

16.4. Lap An Lagoon

Thua Thien Hue province is not only rich in relics, historical places, and history but also gets blessed with a masterpiece from nature. Lap An lagoon is the bright pearl and the highlight of Hue. 

Nestled at the side of the fabulous Bach Ma national forest and Lang Co beach; Lap An lagoon looks like a gorgeous girl in the fabulous Lang Co sea picture.

Lap An lagoon
Lap An lagoon- Culture Pham Travel

What’s else? There is a local fishing village nearby Lap An, it is easy you can see many small fishing boats floating on the brackish water and huge fishing nests of local people in the middle of the poetic lagoon!

Travel to Lap An, you will be lost in a peaceful and charming beauty, that helps you forget all the stress and sadness of daily life.

Lap An Lagoon Hue-Culture Pham Travel

There are many different other things to do and Hue Tours that you must visit but the best way to enjoy and explore Hue city is to book Hue Tours at Culture Pham Travel. You just book Hue Tours and Culture Pham Travel will help you enjoy them.

Lap An Lagoon – The Pearl of Hue

17. Thuy Tien Abandoned Water Park Hue

Thuy Tien Lake (In Vietnamese called Hồ Thủy Tiên) is also named as Abandoned Water Park Hue. It was a famous water amusement park outskirt of Hue city, Vietnam. 

Thuy Tien abandoned water park-Culture Pham Travel

This abandoned water park hidden in the jungle has now become popular with tourists who would like to explore something’s horror and who would like to practice photography skills.

To get detailed information about this attraction, please book our Hue Tours or read our article ” Abandoned Water Park Hue“.

18. An Dinh Palace Hue

An DInh Palace Hue- Culture Pham Travel
The An Dinh Palace Hue- Culture Pham Travel

The An Dinh Palace or Cung An Dinh was the private residence of the Khai Dinh emperor. Between 1917-1919 Nguyen Phuc Vinh Thuy (later Bao Dai Emperor) had renovated in modern style and became the residence officially.

After Bao Dai abdicated in 1945, he moved from the Imperial City to the An Dinh Palace and lived with his mother and his wife, and his children.

things to see in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel

During the twentieth century, this place became the residence for both Vietnam’s last two queens, Tu Cung and Nam Phuong at different times.

It lies on the bank of the An Cuu canal, at 179 Phan Dinh Phung street, Hue, Vietnam. An Dinh Palace is well-known for its beautiful sophisticated decoration. If you cannot visit the Khai Dinh tomb, you can visit An Dinh Palace Hue.

19. Ancient Hue An Hien Garden House

A long time ago, we cared very much about Fengshui. The perfect Fengshui is leaning against mountains and face to the water. We think if your houses have perfect Fengshui, you will get richness and family members are always in good health.

The beautiful garden house Hue
An Hien garden house

Hue imperial city was the capital city of the Nguyen dynasty. Visit Hue, you should visit ancient garden houses to understand Vietnamese house settings and Fengshui in the ancient houses. Brighten in beautiful garden houses in Hue is the An Hien garden house.

20. Thanh Toan Bridge Hue, Vietnam

The Thanh Toan tile bridge is a wooden arch bridge with a tile roof crossing a canal in Thanh Thuy Chanh village, Thuy Thanh commune, Huong Thuy Town, Thua Thien – Hue province. It is about 8 km southeast of Hue city. This is a wooden bridge classified as rare and has the highest artistic value among the ancient bridges in Vietnam.

places to visit in Hue Vietnam-Culture Pham Travel

Most importantly, the bridge was recognized by the Ministry of Culture as a National Cultural Monument in 1990. Book Hue Tours to visit Thanh Toan Bridge Hue, you also have a chance to explore the real rural soul of the village in the Vietnam countryside.

21. Hue Craft Villages

Hue city is not only famous and attractive for the Perfume River, Hue Imperial Citadel, Royal Tombs, and Thien Mu Pagoda but also for the traditional craft villages. Traveling to Hue city, explore the peaceful and rich history villages to understand more about local life, Vietnamese culture, customs as well as the soul of the people of the rustic village.

21.1 Thanh Tien Paper Flower Village

Passing over 300 years of development with many ups and downs, Thanh Tien paper flower-making village still exists today in every corner of the houses and the lifestyle of Hue. Not only has a cultural and spiritual meaning, but this is also one of the most unique traditional craft villages of the ancient capital of Hue.

21.2 Thuy Xuan Incense Making village

Hue is renowned for destinations that have made up the soul of the ancient capital such as the poetic Perfume River, the Citadel- Imperial City of Hue, Hue festival, many temples and royal tombs of the Nguyen Dynasty emperors. However, the homeland of a lot of cultural heritages and unique craft villages, notably Thuy Xuan incense making village.

Update Entrance Fee Hue Monuments In 2024:

HUE Entrance Fee Monuments in 2024

Where Should I Stay In Hue City?

Hue city is one of the famous destinations that tourists must visit in Vietnam. It is packed with attractive with the poetic Perfume River, Truong Tien Bridge; Thien Mu Pagoda, Bach Ma National Park, and Hue Imperial Citadel, not to mention the great cuisines, nightlife, and craft villages. A stay in the city of Hue will give you close access to everything. Hue city hotels differ in style and price, but most will be within an affordable budget.

Kayak Hotel Booking

KAYAK is one of the Best Hue Hotel Booking Platforms and Culture Pham Travel is sure that you will find the best accommodation at the best price for your holiday in this ancient and beautiful city.

7 thoughts on “Top 21 Best Things To Do In Hue Vietnam 2024

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