Vietnam

Forbidden Purple City

The Forbidden Purple City found in the early 19th century in Hue, Vietnam is a living history that's worth a visit. Advised by Fengshui experts, the then emperor ordered the construction of the city meant to resemble the Forbidden City of Beijing for personal use. The first citadel was for commoners' residences and is still in use today. The second citadel is where important ceremonies were hosted while the third was reserved only for the royal family members and eunuchs. Though once acting as an off-limit place, today, you can wander around the citadel-within-citadel-within- citadel palace in whatever fashion you like.

The city went through many hardships like typhoons, and termites, but the most severe damage was made by the American and French wars - the city was flattened, and only a few buildings survived. Since being declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city has been undergoing loving restoration, which provides a mix of both ruins and newly refurbished objects. Take care when you amble around the ruins as there are some gaping holes. Outside the city is the famed Imperial Citadel, a hidden charm of Vietnam.

A visit to these ruins gives a very hopeful yet sometimes haunting vibe. The story of rebirth for this Forbidden City is very intriguing and is definitely well worth a visit. Royal Tomb of King Minh Mang, Thien Mu Pagoda, and Dong Ba Market is recommended trekking as well. Let this tour take you further! 

20-Day Vietnam, Cambodia & Laos Highlights Tour Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City, Mekong Delta, Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue, Da Nang, Hoi An; Cambodia: Phnom Penh, Siem Reap; Laos: Luang Prabang
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