Ancient capital Hue a hidden gem in Asia: UK magazine
British travel magazine Rough Guides has included Vietnam’s former capital Hue in its list of six lesser-known Asian destinations.
Located on the central coast, Hue, which once witnessed the glories and collapse of the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945), the last royals to rule Vietnam, ranks fourth in the list.
One of the highlights of Hue is the Imperial City, a vast complex that "houses the former imperial residence and fortress, modelled on Beijing’s Forbidden City," the magazine said.
The Hue Imperial Citadel seen from above. Photo by Nong Thanh Toan
Dotting the town are the tombs of seven kings created by pouring in vast sums of money and thousands of hours of labor to remind future generations how important kings were, Rough Guides wrote.
The gate of the mausoleum of Tu Duc, the fourth king of the Nguyen Dynasty, the last family to rule Vietnam. Photo by VnExpress/Tuan Dao
Unlike many Asian megacities such as Tokyo, Bangkok, Hong Kong, and Shanghai, which are caught up in a travel rush, some small cities and towns are still overlooked by tourists and offer a laidback atmosphere from noisy tourism, Rough Guides said.
Besides Hue the other Asian hidden gems are Tainan City in Taiwan, Malaysia’s Ipoh, Japan’s Hiroshima, Thailand’s Sukhothai, and China’s Nanjing.
Last year U.S. TV channel Discovery DCODE had named Hue among the five must-visit destinations in Southeast Asia.
The Travel, a respected Canadian publication, had included Hue in a list of 20 lesser-known Asian destinations.