The Tomb of Khai Dinh is one of the Hué Attractions that miss out on seeing. It’s location in the Chau Chu Mountain near the city of Hué in Vietnam, makes it somewhat hidden. Built for the Emperor Nguyen Khai Dịnh, it dates back to between 1920 to 1931 the 11 years period that it took to complete. The tomb is a mixture of Eastern and Western architectural styles. It is found on a steep hill.
In 1916, Khai Dịnh was made Emperor of Vietnam. He worked so closely with the French government, that by the end of his reign he was considered by most to be nothing more than paid employee of the French colonists. The made him very unpopular amongst the Vietnamese people. As is normal for Emperors, Khai Dinh wanted a tomb fitting of his status and as with common practice he wanted it built before he died. He was though the last member of the Nguyen Dynasty ever to make this decision. Increasing his unpopularity, he raised the taxation on the Vietnamese people by 30% to pay for his lavish last resting place. He eventually died in 1926 but before his demise he visited France to draw on Architectural styles there. These style are self evident on the tomb.
The surface area of this particular Hué attraction is much smaller than the tombs of his predecessors. On contrast though, the building itself is elaborately decorated in excess of any others of its era. Khai Dinh’s Tomb is rectangular in shape and sits on the edge of the mountain on the outskirts of the city of Huế. The sides of this huge tomb consist of giant dragon carvings directly into the rock. These are in fact, the biggest dragon sculptures in Vietnam. Visitors can stand inside on an imperial audience court, this holds a magnificent concrete stele monument and twelve stone statues representing bodyguards. Approaching the top floor is the Khai Thanh Palace This features intricately designed glass with porcelain decorations lining the walls. The ceiling here is decorated with a further nine intricate dragons. The final room at the rear contains the sarcophagus and a statue that was made in his honour in France.
When visited Vietnam’s Central Coastal Region take the time out to visit this delightful attract of Hué.