Emperor Tự Đức was born in 1829 and was the fourth Emperor of the Nguyễn Dynasty, His life and throne is rather short, ruling from 1847 until his death in 1883 at the age of 55.
Located in a narrow and quiet valley in Duong Xuan Thuong village, only 8 km from Hue city centre , Tu Duc Tomb is considered as one of the most beautiful, picturesque and largest works of architecture of Nguyen Dynasty’s royal palaces and tombs. It is said that Tu Duc Tomb is a see must in every tour to Hue City.
The tomb was constructed between 1864 and 1867. The construction of Tu Duc’s tomb spent an incredible amount of money and labor, thus resulted in a rebellion of workers. Therefore, the tomb was renamed as Khiem Lang, in comparison with the former name: Van Nien Co (expresses the wish to be permanent). In addition, all the constructions’ names were changed to bear the word Khiem (Modesty) in their names, as the King wanted to express and show his humility.
It was the place where He could retreat from the Citadel to compose poetry or go hunting because the monument was finished when the king was still in reign. The design of the tomb is demonstrated to clearly reflect the profound knowledge and romance of the King’s characteristics.
A glance at the tomb, you can create the illusion of a scenic park, packed with lakes, hills, pavilions amidst the lushness of frangipani trees and grove of pines. It’s surrounded by a solid octagonal wall. A few notable sites in the temple area inside the tomb can be listed as Luu Khiem Lake, Tinh Khiem Island, Xung Khiem Pavilion, Hoa Khiem Temple (which commemorated the King and the Queen). Hoa Khiem Temple is a small museum of the King’s life: a mirror used by the King’s concubines; a lock gifted by the French; the funerary tablets of the Emperor and Empress. As the tomb also functions as a home away from home, there is even a royal theatre inside the complex, named Minh Khiem Duong. The theatre is a reflection of King Tu Duc’s poetic soul, with the ceiling carved with stars, clouds, crescent moon and sky.
The remaining part is the tomb area, consisting of the Honor Courtyard, the Stele Pavilion and the Sepulcher. The Stele Pavilion of this tomb is known as the biggest one in Vietnam, in which the King has inscribed about his life by himself.
Coming to Tu Duc Tomb, tourists may feel like they’re lost in a huge scenery park, where the old monuments of old feudal society are harmoniously in tune with the natural atmosphere.
The Tomb is only 8 km from Hue city centre and the route is smooth so you could travel by car, motorbike or even by bicycle. Once you are in Hue City, you can book a group city tour or private city tour at our Company. If you adore doing it yourself , you can rent a motorbike or bike at Hue Smile Travel to reach this tomb.