Hue isn’t a compulsory stop for many visitors to Vietnam yet it is well worth visiting this ancient capital for a couple of nights just to see the Citadel which was the former home of the country’s Emperors. Apart from the Citadel there isn’t a lot to see so it’s worth taking a trip down the Perfume river and visiting some of the pagodas and many tombs of the emperors that lie just a short distance to the south of Hue. Hue lies 660km south of Hanoi and 1080km north of Ho Chi Minh City. It is well connected by all forms of transport.
Vietnam Airlines is currently the only airline that serves Phu Bai International Airport (about 15 km South of Hue city center). Domestic routes connect Hue to Hanoi – 3 flights daily, and Ho Chi Minh city – 4 flights daily. Travel time is approximately 1 hour, either from Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City and costs about $50-60 for economy class ticket.
From Hue to Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City is a rather long overnight bus trip. Open tour bus tickets can be purchased in tourist area of all three cities. You can choose a stop in between Hue and Hanoi such as Quang Tri (which has the DMZ lines that used to separate North Vietnam and South Vietnam); Quang Binh (home to the World Heritage Phong Nha caves) or Nghe An (Ho Chi Minh’s mothertown and birthplace) to make the trip more bearable. On the other hand, the route from Hue to Ho Chi Minh is filled with worthy stops, such as Hoi An, Nha Trang, Mui Ne, etc.
Travelling to Hue by train is really a pleasant way; the state-run railway network runs the entire length of Vietnam from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. There are daily train stopping at Hue, with two tightly departures at 19.00 and 23.00. There are express trains with soft-berth air-conditioned compartments with reasonable prices, which are very convenient. It is highly recommended that you buy your ticket directly at the station to avoid paying more.
You can reach Hue by taking National Highway 1A or 1B. Da Nang and Hue are now connected by Hai Van tunnel- the longest of its kind in Southeast Asia. The construction of the tunnel has reduced considerably traffic accidents along Hai Van pass.
Hue offers a wide range of accommodation facilities. Innumerable luxury hotels are also under construction so getting the right kind of Hue accommodation is not much of a problem.