THE IMPERIAL CITADEL OF THANG LONG
Before our trip to Vietnam, the only information I knew about Vietnam was the Vietnam War and the time when they became a colony of France. I have zero knowledge about the older periods. A visit to the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long gave me an impression of the rich culture and history Vietnam had before modern times.
The Imperial Citadel of Thang Long is a complex of historic buildings that is significant to Vietnam’s ancient history. It was the center of power during the Ly Dynasty until the Nguyen Lords. Through time, the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long had many leaderships and changes to its name and structures but stayed as an important landmark of Vietnam’s past.
The Citadel’s original plan has three sectors:
- The outermost sector which is the primary defensive fortification of the citadel
- The middle sector which is the Imperial City.
- And, the innermost sector which is the Forbidden City.
DESTRUCTION, REDISCOVER & REVIVAL
Unfortunately, most of the original structures were either destroyed during wars or were demolished to make land for offices and barracks during the French occupation. The only structures that remain with original structures or were built before the French occupation are the Doan Mon (Main Gate), the North Gate, Hau Lau (Rear Palace), and the Flag Tower which were part of the reconstruction and revival of the citadel during the Nguyen Dynasty in the 1800s.
The good thing is that the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and archaeological works are still ongoing. Many relics have been discovered in the area and exhibited in the on-site museum including stone pillars, tiles, roof ornaments, pottery, ancient wells, and the stone dragon steps of the Kinh Thien Palace.
At first, it felt like just another historical site but as I dug deeper, it made me curious and fascinated by the ancient history of Vietnam. It’s very exciting to know in the future what archaeologists will discover more in this site that will give light to the rich history of Thang Long. For now, take a stroll inside the complex and learn about the buildings and relics that the citadel offers.
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TRAVEL GUIDE & TIPS
HOW TO GET THERE:
a. BY TAXI/GRAB:
- Take a local taxi or book a ride via the Grab App going to Lotte Center Hanoi (Travel Time: 10 Minutes from Old Quarter)
b. CAR RENTAL:
c. TRAVEL TOURS:
- Entrance Ticket (Adults): 30,000 VND/Person
- Entrance Ticket (Seniors & Students: 15 Years Old or above): 15,000 VND
- ACCOMMODATIONS IN HANOI
- Madelise Palace Hotel & Spa
- Hanoi Graceful Hotel
- Ha Noi Memory Central Hotel & Spa
- Amira Hotel Hanoi
- Le Chanvre Hotel & Spa
CHECK OUT THESE DISCOUNTED/PROMO RATES FROM KLOOK:
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- Bai Dinh – Trang An – Mua Cave Tour from Ha Noi
- 3D2N Exploring Sapa Local Village Tour from Hanoi
- [Route 1+2] 3D2N Halong Bay Deluxe Cruise from Ha Noi by Phoenix Cruise
- Hoa Lu, Tam Coc/Trang An, and Mua Cave Day Tour from Hanoi
- Website: https://hoangthanhthanglong.com/
- Contact Number: +84-24-3734-5427
- Email: email@example.com
- OPERATING HOURS: 8:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M. (From Tuesdays to Sundays). Closed on Mondays.
- Bring water, a cap or an umbrella. You’ll be walking on open grounds, it can be hot along the way.