History of Thang Long Imperial Citadel
Thang Long Imperial City, also known as Hanoi Citadel, is a historic site located in the heart of Hanoi, Vietnam. The site has a long and rich history dating back to the ancient kingdom of Van Lang, which existed in the Red River Delta region of Vietnam from the 7th to the 10th centuries.
The Thang Long Imperial City was founded in 1010 by King Ly Thai To, who moved the capital of Vietnam from Hoa Lu to Thang Long (now Hanoi). The city was designed in the Chinese style, with a moat, walls, gates, and streets laid out in a grid pattern. Over the centuries, the city was expanded and renovated many times, and it served as the capital of Vietnam for nearly a thousand years, until the capital was moved to Hue in 1802.
During its long history, the Thang Long Imperial City has been the center of Vietnamese culture, politics, and religion. It has been home to many important cultural, historical, and architectural sites, including the Temple of Literature, the Imperial Palace, and the Flag Tower.
The Thang Long Imperial City was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2010, in recognition of its cultural and historical significance. Today, the site is a popular tourist attraction, and it is an important part of Vietnam’s cultural and national identity.
Archeological Site of Thang Long Imperial Citadel
The archeological site of Thang Long Imperial City is a historic site located in the heart of Hanoi, Vietnam. It is the remains of the ancient city of Thang Long, which served as the capital of Vietnam for nearly a thousand years, from the 11th century until 1802. The site is located in the Hoan Kiem District of Hanoi, and it covers an area of approximately 18 hectares.
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As an integral part of the Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long-Hanoi, the Archaeological Site at 18 Hoang Dieu is situated to the west of the Kinh Thien Palace foundation. Excavations revealed a amazing stack of archaeological layers reflecting a cultural evolution, through the time span of 1300 years.
The archeological site of Thang Long Imperial City includes the remains of many important cultural, historical, and architectural sites, including the Gates, the Imperial Palace, and the Flag Tower. These structures were built during various periods in the city’s history, and they reflect the diverse cultural influences that shaped the city over time.
The Main Site Of Thang Long Imperial Citadel
The Imperial Enclosure is a complex of buildings that were used by the Vietnamese monarchy as their residence and administrative center. It includes several palaces, gardens, and other structures that were used for various purposes, such as ceremonies, state affairs, and entertainment. Here are some things you can see while visiting the Thang Long Imperial City:
The Flag Tower: This is a tall tower that was used to raise the flag of Vietnam during the imperial era. It is located within the citadel and is a symbol of the city’s history and culture. It is surrounded by a moat and has several gates, walls, and towers that were used for defense. The Flag Tower was built in the late 19th century during the French colonial period in Vietnam. It was originally called the Victory Tower, and it was used to hoist the French flag. Visitors can climb to the top of the tower to get a panoramic view of the city. The tower is surrounded by a park and is a popular spot for locals to relax and spend time with their families.
South Gate (Doan Mon): The South Gate is the main entrance to the Forbidden City, the innermost enclosure where the Emperor’s palace was located. The gate is made of brick and stone, and it has a distinctive architectural style that reflects the cultural influences of the Chinese and Vietnamese dynasties that ruled the region. The gate is surrounded by a large courtyard.
Kinh Thien Palace: The Kinh Thien Palace was located in the center of the citadel and was used as the main residence of the Vietnamese emperor. The Kinh Thien Palace was a large complex that included a number of buildings, including the royal palace, the throne hall, and the royal court. The palace was constructed using traditional Vietnamese architectural techniques, and it was decorated with elaborate carvings and other decorative elements. The palace was destroyed during the 20th century, and today, the remains of the Kinh Thien Hall today is the old foundation and two sets of stone dragon steps.
Pagode des Dames (Hậu Lâu): This pavillion under Nguyen Dynasty it was where the concubines stayed while accompanying the emperor to Hanoi. The pavillion was reconstructed by the French authorities from seriously damaged condition around end of 19th century.
North Gate (Chính Bắc Môn): The gate was built on the ground of earlier gate of the Le period. To see the facade of the gate, walk around the corner onto Hoang Dieu Street. There are still two holes caused by the Franch cannonballs fired from their battle ships on the Red River during the attack in 1882.
Old vestiges of the Communist Party leaders durung the wartime include Bunker T1 being the command bunker of the General Advisory Department and House D67 with the underground stronghold. After seeing the underground bunker, visitors can follow the evac tunnel to go out at back garden. Both the house and the bunker display many original objects of the highest national leaders while working here.
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The ticket is valid for both the Central Sector and the Archaeological Site. The viewing of the site is made possible with modern exhibition format featuring a system of elevated walkways over the excavation, observation balconies along the walkway.
Information Of Thang Long Imperial Citadel
Address: 19C Hoang Dieu, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi
Opening: Daily 08:00 – 17:00 except Monday.
Adults: VND 30,000/pax
Children (<15 years): Free
Self-guided app available for Android and iOS devices.
Average visit time: 2 hours