|Da Nang, Вьетнам|
The scenic 2.5 hours drive to Hue via Hai Van Pass offers spectacular views of mountains, the sea, idyllic beaches and villages. On arrival, you will visit the Royal Citadel, Forbidden Purple City within the Imperial City, the past glory of Hue. The Royal Citadel is composed of three walled enclosures, each within the other, a city within a city. The Imperial City housed the palaces, pavilions, civil and religious ceremonies and official audiences with the civil mandarins. There is the Forbidden Purple City inside the Imperial City that was the royal palace used only by the imperial family and the concubines and eunuchs, who served them. This part of the Imperial City suffered the most extensive damage during the Vietnam War and little remains of the original structure - today there are just ruins. UNESCO as a World Heritage Site is presently restoring it. After lunch, proceed by boat along the Perfume River to the Thien Mu Pagoda, one of the oldest ancient architectural structures for religious worship in Hue. Then continue to Khai Dinh’s Tomb; the spectacular entryway with its dragon pillars is the highlight of the Tomb. The architecture is in a modern style with a blend of European and Eastern design. Next stop will be Tu Duc’s Tomb; a peaceful resting place enclosed by walls, it features pine woods and a lakeside pavilion with lotus blossoms where the emperor once fished, listened to music, and wrote poetry. The tomb was more of a pleasure garden than a tomb and the emperor used it as a second residence, where he indulged in extravagant 50-course meals of incredible delicacies. The mausoleum was constructed between 1864 and 1867 by a force of 3,000 labors. In the late afternoon, you will be transferred back to your hotel in Danang or Hoi An.