The forbidden city is encircled by a 4-metre high brick wall with a classic coating. This wall also is surrounded by a ditch filled with water. Each door preceded by one or several bridges gives access on each side. The Ngọ Môn Gate is the main entrance and it is reserved for the King.
It is a powerful masonry foundation drilled with five passages and surmonted by an elegant wooden structure with two levels, the Belvedere of five Phoenixes (Lầu Ngủ Phụng). In the East and West of the Citadel, one finds respectively the gates of humanity and virtue which are highly decorated and pierced each by three passages. The gate of humanity has been completely restored in 1977.
World cultural heritage of Vietnam
Once we have gone precisely through the Ngo Môn Gate, we see appearing on the main axis the sumptuous palace of Supreme Harmony or Throne palace that can be reached through the Esplanade of the Great Salvation (Sân Ðại Triều Nghi). It is in this Palace that the emperor, seated in a prominent symbolic position, received the salvation of all dignitaries of the empire hierarchically aligned on the esplanade at the time of great ceremonies. It is also the only building kept after so many years of war. Behind this palace, it is the imperial residence.
© Đặng Anh Tuấn
- 1 Noon gate (Ngọ Môn)
- 2 Throne palace (Điện Thái Hoà)
- 3 Archives pavilion ( Thái Bình Ngự Lâm Thư Lâu)
- 4 Royal theatre ( Duyệt Thị Đường)
- 5 Pavilion of Splendor (Hiến Lâm Các)
- 7 Gate of virtue (Hiền Đức Môn)
- 8 Gate of humanity (Hiển Nhơn Môn)