An Dinh Palace, Hue - review by Rusty Compass
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An Dinh Palace, Hue

| 18 Sep 2012
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Map

Map
An Dinh Palace, Hue
97 Phan Dinh Phung St, Hue - or at the rear on Nguyen Hue St

Map
Our rating
18 Sep 2012

Built by his father Khai Dinh, An Dinh Palace was the last Hue abode of Bao Dai, the last Nguyen Dynasty King. He lived here following his abdication in favour of Ho Chi Minh's Communists in 1945.

Note: The information provided in this review was correct at time of publishing but may change. For final clarification please check with the relevant service

Cung An Dinh or An Dinh Palace was commissioned by Khai Dinh, Vietnam’s second last emperor, in the early twentieth century. He's said to have taken an active interest in French architectural styles and this is on display both here and at his tomb in the countryside 10kms from Hue.

An Dinh Palace was almost totally ruined during its post 1975 life as the Hue Labour Union headquarters.

The main palace building was recently restored as part of a German Government aid project where international specialists trained locals in restoration techniques. Their work was especially focused on six large paintings of the Hue countryside commissioned by Khai Dinh. These are a highlight of a visit, along with the building's ornate interior and exterior work.

Information on the palace is even more scarce than at most of Hue’s historical sights  but it seems that Khai Dinh was a regular visitor when departing the confines of his main residence in the citadel. 

His son, Bao Dai, Vietnam's last emperor, lived here following the communist uprising of 1945 and his abdication.

Both of Vietnam's last two queens, Tu Cung and Nam Phuong lived here at different times during the twentieth century.

Like the rest of Hue, there is an aura of mystery and tragedy as you walk through the An Dinh palace grounds and the building. I've not seen another tourist on any recent visit. And although there has been a restoration effort, the stories of this complex remain untold.

A short walk further along Phan Dinh Phung St is Tu Cung residence, the final home of Khai Dinh's wife, until her death in 1980.


Travel tips -
An Dinh Palace is located on the canal on Phan Dinh Phung St though access seems more reliable from the rear on Nguyen Hue St.
Mark Bowyer
Mark Bowyer is the founder and publisher of Rusty Compass.
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1 comment so far

An Dinh Palace is open from 07 to 17 every day. A ticket costs 20,000 vnd. You cannot enter from the rear. There is a gate but it is closed snd locked. You must enter from the front. You may use a camera outside but not inside the building.

  • Torben Retboll
  • Hue
  • Sunday, 13 November 2016 08:30