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Gia Long Tomb
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Gia Long Tomb

Gia Long Tomb is one of the most famous mausoleums of the Nguyen Dynasty in Hue. Located in the middle of a vast pine forest with 42 large and small hills. Gia Long Tomb has an ancient, wild and peaceful beauty.

Coming to the ancient capital of Hue, you should visit Gia Long Tomb once. In order to admire the beauty and discover the immortal love story of the first king of the Nguyen Dynasty associated with this mausoleum.

1. Where is Gia Long Tomb?

People built Gia Long Tomb -Thien Tho Lang – on a remote and deserted Thien Tho Son hill. Located in Dinh Mon village – Huong Tho commune – Huong Tra district – Hue city, Thua Thien Hue province, Vietnam. Located about 20 km south of Hue city center, about 102 km northwest of Da Nang city.

2. How is Gia Long Tomb unique?

Hue is famous for many mausoleums and temples, among which the most prominent is the mausoleum complex of the Nguyen kings. Over 13 kings and 143 years of reign (1802 – 1945), the Nguyen Dynasty left Hue a quite large legacy. They contribute to creating a quiet, spiritual and mysterious Hue. And recognized as one of UNESCO World Heritages.

When traveling to Hue, if you are a lover of history and culture, you will definitely want to visit the resting place of the first king who founded the Nguyen Dynasty. Gia Long Tomb in Hue not only has the most beautiful feng shui location among the Nguyen Dynasty royal tombs. But is also famous for the fierce love story between the Emperor and Queen Thua Thien Cao.

King Gia Long’s tomb has another name: Thien Tho Lang, built in 6 years (1814-1820) including many tombs in King Gia Long’s royal family. The entire mausoleum complex includes 42 mountains and hills, large and small. In front of the mausoleum, Dai Thien Tho mountain stands out, and behind it there are 7 mountains as the occupation.

The road to Gia Long mausoleum is lined with trees and is the most romantic road compared to all other mausoleums. The lotus pond covers the wool flowing through the mausoleums. The pink color of the lotus petals will be brilliant when in season, the lotus fragrance will spread throughout the mountains and hills. In the distance are herds of buffalo and herds of storks as if entwined together as friends. The winding roads are fragrant all year round with the scent of young grass and shaded with green pine trees.

3. Feng shui factors when placing Gia Long Tomb

Perhaps more than 200 years ago, this king had many calculations when choosing his eternal resting place. While there could have been many other lands, he still listens to geologist Le Duy Thanh (son of scientist Le Quy Don) and chose the pristine mountainous region of Thien Tho Son.

This is a mountainous area between the left and right streams, considered a location that attracts all the good things from all directions. But this is a completely isolated area, the only means of getting here is the Waterway.

4. History of King Gia Long and immortal love story

King Gia Long was born in 1762 and his nickname is Nguyen Phuc Anh (often called Nguyen Anh). He was the founder of the Nguyen Dynasty – the last dynasty in Vietnamese feudal history. He ascended the throne in 1802 and ruled the country until his death in 1820. As a martial general, King Gia Long was extremely strong. But few people knew that this king also had a loyal and loyal love affair with Queen Thua Thien Cao.

Mrs. Tong Thi Lan (Queen Thua Thien Cao) is the daughter of the Grand Master Tong Phuoc Khuong. Not only is she famous for her beauty and gentleness, but she is also very well-mannered and polite. Entering the palace at the age of 18, she became a royal concubine and always supported and accompanied the king through many ups and downs of times.

The undying love between the king and queen touched many people, especially through what the king did after the queen passed away. In 1814, because the king was so sorry for his queen, he decided to build a mausoleum simulating the ancient people’s funeral ceremony. So that after his death, he could be buried next to his soulmate.

When they were alive, they had days of shared hardship and love. So when they died, the king still wanted to spend the rest of his life with his wife. This is the reason why King Gia Long’s tomb became a unique mausoleum different from other tombs.

Landscape at Gia Long Tomb

5. When is the best time to visit Gia Long tomb?

Gia Long Tomb is located not far from the ancient capital of Hue, so when traveling here, you need to find out information about the climate in Hue:

  • From January to March: The weather is cold, trees are budding, and the scenery is beautiful. Suitable to admire the gentle beauty of Hue.
  • April: Hue Festival season. The atmosphere is vibrant and bustling, the streets are beautifully decorated. If you are a person who likes prosperity, you can travel to Hue at this time.
  • From May to July: The climate is cool and dry at this time, which is also the most beautiful time to travel to Hue, especially in early August. You should also consider and check the weather forecast before going because This is also the rainy season.
  • Hue flower season: Just like Hanoi has 12 flower seasons, Hue also has many attractive flower species that bloom all year round. March and April are cornflower season. Summer is the time when red poinciana blooms brightly in a corner of the sky next to Trang Tien bridge. Throughout May to August, lotus flowers in the Imperial Citadel bloom,…All contribute to the dreamy beauty of the ancient capital.
Tomb of King Gia Long

6. How to get to Gia Long tomb?

6.1 Moving To Hue

6.1.1. By plane

This is the most convenient and fastest means of transportation for tourists from other provinces and cities to reach the Hue tourist area. Most domestic airlines currently have direct flights to Phu Bai airport, Hue. Flight time from Hanoi to Hue takes about 1 hour 15 minutes, from Ho Chi Minh City to Hue about 1 hour 30 minutes.

6.1.2 By passenger car

If you live in nearby localities, choosing a bus is quite suitable because the travel time is short and the cost is relatively low. If you are in remote provinces, you can choose a sleeper bus to travel. From Hanoi to Hue, please refer to buying bus tickets from popular bus companies running the Hanoi – Hue route. Such as Hung Thanh, Camel, Duc Thinh,… The Hanoi – Hue route has a travel time of about 12 – 14 hours.

From Ho Chi Minh City to Hue it takes about 20 hours. Some popular bus companies running the HCM – Hue route include Hoang Long, Huong Ty, Minh Phuong,…

6.13 By train

If you have a lot of time to travel to Hue and love sightseeing along the way, choose the train. Train tickets are not too expensive. Trains usually have hard seats, soft seats, beds and air-conditioned or non-air-conditioned compartments. If you go far in the hot season, you should choose trains SE3, SE1, buy air-conditioned sleeper tickets to be comfortable and shorten travel time.

6.2 From Hue city to Minh Mang mausoleum

Previously, to get to Gia Long mausoleum, the only way to travel was by water, by boat. You take a boat down the Huong River through Thien Mu Pagoda, Hon Chen Palace,… However, today you can get here by boat. 2 ways:

  • Crossing the pontoon bridge built by people across the Ta Trach River;
  • Take the main road passing Tuan bridge, Minh Mang mausoleum and Huu Trach bridge across the river of the same name.

7. Exploring the architecture and destinations at Gia Long tomb complex

7.1 Tomb area – Buu citadel

In the center of the complex are two double burial tombs of King Gia Long and Queen Thua Thien Cao, located on Chinh Trung hill. Two stone tombs of the same size, just an inch apart, are not carved with patterns, are not painted or gilded, just simply last forever.

The unique point is that standing from behind and looking at the junction between the roofs of the two tombs. You will see Dai Thien Tho peak located in the middle, exactly “not a single inch wrong”. This is the detail that makes Gia Long tomb become the tomb with the most unique feng shui architecture in Vietnam.

Outside the two tombs is a solid wall system called “Buu citadel”. The bronze gate of Buu Thanh is the place leading to the resting place of the king and queen. Every year this gate only opens on holidays, death anniversaries, etc. to clean, repair, and clean.

Below are 7 levels of worship grounds, including an adoration yard paved with Bat Trang tiles. Two rows of stone statues of civil and military mandarins standing in adoration, and stone statues of war elephants and war horses majestically guarding.

7.2 Bi Dinh – The stele inscribed with merits

To the left of the mausoleum is Bi Dinh – a stele house engraved with achievements. This is a familiar structure present in most royal tombs of the Nguyen Dynasty.

In Bi Dinh is the stele “Thanh Duc Than Cong” erected by King Minh Mang to praise his father (the first king of the Nguyen Dynasty). The stele is carved with delicate patterns and after nearly 200 years the letters are still clearly visible.

7.3 Minh Thanh Palace – Place to worship the king and Queen Thua Thien Cao

To the right of the mausoleum is the palace with Minh Thanh Palace located in the central area. It is located on Bach Son mountain and surrounded by a wall. This is a place to worship and burn incense to worship the Emperor and Queen.

In the past, inside the Palace there were many memorabilia associated with King Gia Long’s life of war, such as helmets, saddles, etc. After many upheavals of the times, these memorabilia were no longer there.

In addition to Thien Tho mausoleum, Gia Long mausoleum complex also has other mausoleums of members of the Nguyen royal family. Including: Thien Tho Huu Tomb, Quang Hung Tomb, Truong Phong Tomb, Vinh Mau Tomb, Thoai Thanh Tomb, Hoang Co Tomb….

7.4 Tomb of Thien Tho Huu and Gia Thanh Palace – mausoleum and place to worship King Minh Mang’s mother

Among the Gia Long tomb complex, the most notable are Thien Tho Huu Tomb and Gia Thanh Palace. Which is the burial place and shrine of Queen Thuan Thien Cao – the second wife of King Gia Long and also the mother of King Minh.

7.5 Immersing yourself in the ancient, peaceful scenery

Gia Long Tomb was built on the upper part of the Perfume River, surrounded by green hills and primeval forest subdivisions. All create an ancient, peaceful and especially attractive scene for many tourists.

Stepping into the Gia Long mausoleum area, you will feel a solemn, quiet and peaceful atmosphere. The architectural works are built with stone and ceramic tiles, creating a unique style, mixing many different designs.

Not only possessing outstanding architecture, Gia Long mausoleum also has many flower gardens and green trees. It creates a healthy ecosystem for many types of birds and animals. You can relax and stroll the grounds, learn about the country’s cultural history and enjoy the beautiful views.

Gia Long Tomb

8. Specialties when visiting Gia Long Tomb

After admiring and exploring the Gia Long mausoleum complex, you return to Hue city to enjoy the specialties here:

Cuisine in Hue has its own unique characteristics. The dishes are not too sweet or too spicy, rich in Central flavors and are prepared very skillfully and delicately. It makes you remember them forever after eating once.

8.1 Hue Beef Noodle Soup

Beef noodle soup is a famous specialty of Hue. When traveling to Hue, you definitely have to wake up early and eat a delicious bowl of beef noodle soup here. The broth is carefully simmered from beef bones, onions, and other traditional spices to create a delicious, attractive flavor. Hue beef noodle soup is large and soft, served with pork patties and a little blood and fatty pork hoof. Before eating, add some fresh lemon, a few pieces of chili and raw vegetables and mix well. The delicious taste of beef noodle soup in Hue is hard to compare anywhere else.

8.2 Hue Duckweed Cake (Banh Beo)

A hot cup of Banh Beo with sweet and aromatic filling comes with a bowl of slightly spicy dipping sauce. When eating, pour fish sauce over a bowl of Banh Beo, enjoy the soft, flexible taste of the dough, the aroma of fried onions, and the sweetness of the shrimp and meat filling.

8.3 Nam Pho Noodle Soup

A delicious bowl of Nam Pho noodle soup, mixed with rich shrimp and meat filling and green onion stalks, sprinkled with a little green chili sauce, who can refuse this unique dish when traveling to Hue.

8.4 Hue Sweet Soup

Hue is famous for many types of sweet soup, each with its own delicious taste such as lotus seed sweet soup, floating sweet soup, taro sweet soup, roasted meat sweet soup. No need to go to big restaurants, just sit next to street vendors or small alleys, order a cup of sweet soup, and you can enjoy the sophistication of Hue’s snacks.

8.5 Hue Pressed Cake

The still hot cakes are set on a small plastic plate. When eating, guests add laksa leaves, papaya, and cucumber, then roll it up and dip it in a bowl of sweet and sour fish sauce. The cake is rich in the taste of fat, crispy sour of soaked papaya, rich in meat, eggs and the aroma of green onions, perfect for a summer afternoon snack for Hue tourists.

9. Accommodation when traveling to Gia Long tomb

Because Gia Long mausoleum is not too far from Hue city. Therefore, after visiting this tomb complex, you will return to Hue city to rest.

9.1 Resorts:

If you are looking for a perfect tour in Hue, relaxing amidst beautiful nature. Moreover, if you can enjoy the peaceful atmosphere without any problems, the resorts in Hue will be an irresistible choice.

  • Lang Co Beach Resort.
  • Ana Mandara Hue Beach Resort.
  • Pilgrimage Village Boutique Resort & Spa.

Above are all names that satisfy your dream vacation. Choose one of the luxury resorts in Hue for a vacation in the tropical paradise of the ancient capital.

9.2 Hotels:

Hotels in Hue are of great interest thanks to their affordable prices, plus beautiful locations – most are located in the central area, or near famous tourist destinations:

  • Golden Star Villa Hue.
  • Cherish Hotel Hue.
  • Rosaleen Boutique Hotel.
  • Indochine Palace Hotel.
  • Imperial Hue Hotel.
  • Eldora Hotel.

9.3 Homestays:

For young tourists who travel in the form of discovery, want to save money but still like a great place to stop, go straight to the hostels and homestays in Hue. What’s better than staying at a very affordable price, you still have the opportunity to own a lovely, small but cozy place to rest, right in the center of Hue city.

  • Deja Vu Homestay.
  • Mosaic Garden.
  • April Hostel.
  • EMT Homestay.
  • Branchiee Homestay.

10. Some special notes when visiting Gia Long tomb

  • To make your trip to Gia Long mausoleum meaningful and complete, you need to note some of the following points:
  • Gia Long Tomb is usually open to visit from 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Please choose polite and discrete clothing, suitable for the place you visit.
  • Do not litter, organize meals, or cause disorder.
  • Complying with regulations at tourist attractions such as: do not touch objects with prohibited signs, etc.
  • Being sure to bring hats, hats and drinking water to use when necessary.

Gia Long Tomb is a wonderful picture of the harmonious combination of architecture and nature. All the highlights here will immerse you in a quiet, poetic and charming space.

If you are planning your next vacation to Hue, stop by Gia Long Mausoleum to visit once. Please contact Origin Vietnam immediately – a professional tour operator, we will give you a reasonable schedule for your needs and time. We also accompany you on your tours in Hue to explore Gia Long tomb and commit to bringing you the best experiences.

Private Hue Tour Package 5 days

This excursion itinerary encompasses no less than 3 UNESCO designated World Heritage Sites. The sixteenth century silk course trading port of Hoi An. Beside My Son holy land, the sacred remains of the ancient Cham civilization. Specially the imperial city of Hue. The region is rich in natural culture and history. This tailored tour as such has tremendous long term potential for the development of road tourism during the Indochina region.
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