Khai Dinh Tomb
The tomb is about 7km away from the center of Hue city. Travellers are recommended to get there by motorbike or taxi.
Despite being the smallest, Khai Dinh Tomb is the most recent and costly amongst other Nguyen royal tombs. Khai Dinh chose to build his tomb by modern materials like concrete, slates and wrought iron, hence its appearance is quite gray and imposing.
At first, the main building brings about a strong Western feel, however, the landscape was arranged to reflect traditional perceptions: a balanced combination between wood, land, water and plants. Overall, it’s an emerging rectangular structure with 127 steps, leaning against the mountain. The side walls are formed by the biggest sculptures of dragons in all over Vietnam. After climbing upstairs, tourists can first see the house of epitaph. The statues of madarines court (including madarines, horses, soldiers…) are placed at the courtyard.
The most notable place in Khai Dinh Tomb is Thien Dinh Palace, which contains bronze statues and steles of the King. Walls are densely decorated and inlaid with elaborate glass and porcelain designs. The most highlighted feature of this room is the intricate painting on the ceiling, illustrating nine dragons amidst fleeting clouds. Inside the tomb, there are two statues modelled the King: the one on the throne was sculptured in Paris in 1920 by Ducuing and Barbedienne.