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How to Spend One Day in Hue Vietnam as a Solo Traveller

Pronounced ‘hway’, Hue is an ancient city was once the capital of Vietnam for 150 years. From the complex local architecture to the aesthetics of food preparation, everything is done with precision.

If you are a history buff or like to learn more about the recent history in Vietnam, Hue is the place you want to be. Hue was the centre of the bloodiest battle and massacre during the Vietnam War. During the Battle of Hue, the Americans destroyed 80% of the city. When you visit Hue, you will see how the city is trying to restore the Royal Palace and other famous temples.

To be quite honest, if there is only one region you must visit in Vietnam, you must visit the central region. Both Hue and Hoi An are amazing places, and they both captured my heart and filled my belly with delicious food.

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What you need to know before travelling solo to Hue Vietnam

Before you take a solo trip to Hue, take a look at some of these travel tips first:

  • Hue is safe for female solo travellers.
  • The best way to see Hue is to rent a scooter if you want to see all the sights around Hue. Traffic is not as crazy as Ho Chi Minh City or Hanoi.
  • Plan your solo trip to Hue with the following festivals and events:
    • Hue Festival (April/May/June every 2 years) – experience cultural events, games and see performances throughout the week of this biannual celebration.
    • Wandering Souls Day (early September) – visit Buddhist shrines to see monks pray and perform ceremonies.

What to do in Hue Vietnam

Most people will come to Hue and visit the Royal Palace. As a Unesco World Heritage Site, the walled palace showcases the late feudal urban planning in East Asia. The central structure was used as an administrative centre for southern Vietnam during the 17th and 18th centuries. Within the complex, it also houses the Imperial Residence, the Imperial City, and the Forbidden Purple City and related royal palaces. Even though the Royal Palace suffered from the effects of three wars, the city of Hue puts a lot of effort into the restoration and preservation of these important historical sites.

Also, there are many tombs of past emperors all over the city. They can be seen either on tour or simply rent a scooter.

Here are some of Hue’s top attractions that are worth visiting:

Hue War Museum

Night Market along Perfume River

Van Mieu (Temple of Literature)

Tomb of Minh Mang

Royal Tombs

Thien Mu Pagoda

Truong Tien Bridge

Bach Ma National Park

Day trip from Hue

Hoi An

Going to Hoi An couldn’t be easier! There are many ways to go from Hue to Hoi An and vice versa. It is a matter of personal preference and budget.

On my last trip, I decided to hire a private car. The driver from Da Nang Private Car met us at the airport and drove us to Hue in a comfortable vehicle. On the way, we stopped at various sites like Hai Van Pass, Lang Co Beach and we even had a fantastic seafood lunch at a lakeside restaurant called Hải sản Bé Thân.

The car service is easy to book, a deposit is not required, and cost about $50USD. It is a more expensive option than other forms of transportation, but it allows you to travel on your own time and schedule.

Related Post – Everything you need to know about Hai Van Pass

What to eat in Hue

Hue is a culinary powerhouse. There is no shortage of fantastic food in Hue! You are only limited by the time you have in this city.

From chefs preparing food for the royal parties during the Nguyen dynasty to the local chefs who know the local ingredients well, the myriad of food in Hue is exceptional. The cultural traditions of food preparation continue to thrive in modern-day Hue where food plays an important role in local culture and lifestyle.

You must experience all the delicate flavours of Hue. Try all of these iconic dishes:

  • Bánh bèo – tiny rice flour pancakes with shrimp and pork skin
  • Bún bò huế – Vietnamese soup with rice vermicelli and beef
  • Bánh canh – crab and tapioca noodle soup
  • Bánh khoai – pan-fried crepe with shrimp and pork
  • Nem lui – lemongrass pork skewers
  • Bánh loc goi – tapioca dough stuffed with shrimp and pork
  • Bánh nam – steamed rice savoury cake with fried ground shrimp and pork wrapped in banana leaves
  • Bánh ép – thin tapioca pancake with a side of pork, pate, dried beef, or egg
  • Cơm hến – clam rice
  • Bun hen – rice vermicelli noodles with baby clams
  • Bánh tráng trứng – rice cracker pizza
  • Trai va salad – salad with Hue’s fig, hoisin sauce, or salty fermented shrimp paste

Where to eat in Hue

Below are some of the places I tried in Hue. All of these places really showcase the best flavours of Central Vietnam.

  • Hanh Restaurant – 11 Pho Duc Chinh; try bánh bèo, bánh khoai, nem lui, and bánh loc goi and drink huda (local beer). Ordering is easy as there are photos on the menu. The staff here is very helpful.
  • Madam Thu Restaurant – 45 Vo Thi Sau Street; food is presented nicely, and it tastes good too!
  • Dong Ba Market – Tran Hung Dao Street; try a bowl of bún bò huế here. As Anthony Bourdain calls it “the greatest soup in the world.”

Where to stay in Hue Vietnam

Most of the accommodation is in Hue City, just east of Perfume River. If you stay in this area, exploring the Royal Palace, Dong Ba Market and other central attractions can be done on foot.

Hotel accommodations can range from $25-40USD per night for a comfortable room. There are other luxurious options if you (and your wallet) are up for it. Because the hotel prices are quite reasonable and competitive in Hue, we chose a hotel over the Airbnb option.

  • Alba Spa Hotel ($) – I really liked the colour palette of the room, price and location of this hotel. If you want to stay overnight in Hue, this is the best budget hotel in Hue.
    • Check prices & reviews: Agoda
Thank you for reading my Hue itinerary post

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About Author

Hi, my name is Queenie, and I've been a solo traveller for 18+ years and currently based in Hong Kong. Follow me on my adventures through Instagram and my blog!

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