Hoa Lu, Ninh Binh - review by Rusty Compass
Ninh Binh | see and do guide

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Hoa Lu, Ninh Binh

| 11 Apr 2012


Hoa Lu, Ninh Binh
0800 - 1700

Our rating
11 Apr 2012

Hoa Lu was the capital for the 10th century Dinh and Le dynasties before Emperor Ly Thai To relocated to Hanoi at the beginning of the 11th century. Two 17th century temples in a picturesque mountain setting mark the area where the former capital was located.

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

Hoa Lu’s historic offerings are less memorable than the stunning countryside in which they sit. Remnants of the original capital are modest. Instead, travellers can visit two atmospheric 17th century temples. The more impressive is dedicated to Emperor Dinh Tien Hoang, who established the capital at Hoa Lu. After his murder, Le Dai Hanh established control and the shortlived Le dynasty began. The second temple honours Le Dai Hanh.

Hoa Lu was considered a safer location from Chinese invaders with the limestone mountains providing good surveillance as well as barriers against invaders.

Like other major historic sites in Vietnam, information for visitors is near non-existent.

Travel tips
Hoa Lu is best visited during a day or two of cycling in the area. Day trippers from Hanoi normally combine Hoa Lu with a boat trip to Tam Coc. But the day trip is tight and usually in sync with coach loads of other day trippers from Hanoi. Best to stay in Ninh Binh for a night or two.
Mark Bowyer
Mark Bowyer is the founder and publisher of Rusty Compass.
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