Hue: the Imperial Tombs
What else is there to see in Hue besides the poor man's Forbidden City (AKA the Imperial Palace)? Funny you should ask, because I just happen to have a bunch of pictures of the other major attraction: the Imperial Tombs. (I bet you never would have guessed from the title of this post!) So after spending our first day checking out the Imperial Palace, we fulfilled our touristic duties (which sounds dirty, but isn't) and checked out the Imperial Tombs on day 2.
I have to say that I liked the tombs better. For one, they weren't smaller-scale copies of something I'd already seen a kagillion times, like, say, the Imperial Palace. (For the record, "a kagillion" is roughly equivalent to "a shitload." I hope that clears up any confusion.) For two, they are mostly located near to the river, so the best way to get to them is to hire a boat to take you down river to them, which, as it turns out, is much more pleasant than walking around a massive, dusty palace complex when both the temperature and the humidity involve the number 97. For third, our guide to the tombs was a foppish Vietnamese dandy who spoke occasionally but not always spoke with a lisp, which was very amusing. (Very amusing because I think it was an affectation, not because he had a lisp. I'm not a jerk.)(Well, not that big of a jerk ...) His least favorite tourists? The Chinese, because "they throw garbage everywhere." (True.) His most favorite? Americans and Germans, because "they're always on time." Simple wisdom folks, simple wisdom.
Anyway, the Imperial Tombs. The Tombs were where they buried ... wait for it ... the Imperial family. Also, they were pretty. The tombs, not the family. Although I'm not saying the family wasn't pretty, just that I don't really know either way ...
Whatever. At any rate, here are some more pictures. The first of which is a temple, not a tomb, but since the temple was on the way to the tombs, we stopped there anyway. Do you remember that Vietnamese monk who set himself on fire? (There's a very famous picture, I believe.) Well, that didn't happen here. But he did COME from here, so that's something. Also, in the foreground, you can see the "dragon boats" (that is, boats made up to look like dragons, not dragon boats, which are, confusingly, something different) that ferry tourists like us up and down the river:
This is the car the monk who set himself on fire used to drive down to Saigon. Where he set himself on fire. Hence the whole "monk who set himself on fire" moniker:
A boy and his non-Dragon Boat dragon boat:
Here, at long last, is one of the tombs. This is the first one we went to. As I said, they are quite nice-looking:
Here's a different tomb. Which may have actually been the third tomb we went to--at this point, I can't really remember. Anyway, the lily pond is nice. Quite reminiscent of the Garden of Harmonious Interest in the Summer Palace, I think, don't you? (Yes, that was supposed to be snarky.)
This big stele (notice how I cleverly left in the sitting-down guy for scale)(Well done, me!) listed all the accomplishments of the emperor who was buried at this particular tomb. Apparently he got a lot done. Well, either that or he just used a really big font. One of those, anyway:
One of the tombs had a bunch of warrior statues in a courtyard. They looked a lot like the picture below. Mostly because the picture below is of those warrior statues. Funny how that works:
Not to jump around TOO much, but this is the alter at a smaller temple we stopped at between tombs:
This is a close up of an outdoor alter at the same temple mentioned above. I think the picture is quite nice, thank you:
Still more from Hue to come!
Previously, on my vacation:
- Hue: the Imperial Palace.
- Hue: the Streets.
- Halong Bay: the Videos.
- Halong Bay.
- Hanoi: the Random.
- Hanoi: Water Puppets.
- Hanoi: the "Hilton."
- Hanoi: the People.
- Hanoi: Zoom, Zoom.
- Hanoi: the Streets.
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