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We would only be spending a day in Hue as essentially, for us, it was just the starting point to our Easy Rider experience.
From Ninh Binh we took a sleeper train south to Hue which took about 11 hours. For this journey we were booked on a 2nd Class sleeper with AC which was comprised of six berths per cabin. The journey was okay albeit long and we managed to get a fair amount of sleep but I must say I prefer the sleeper trains in Thailand to those in Vietnam.
We had high hopes for this very high ranking hotel on booking.com however after experiencing bed bugs for the first time ever, I won’t be recommending Hue Nino Hotel, which is a shame as other than the bug issue the place was wonderful; friendly staff, low cost, well located, free breakfast and a lovely room.
Conscious of our time constraints we made the decision to book a driver (via the hostel) who could take us around the ‘must-see’ sights in about six hours as this saves a huge amount of both planning but also of ordering taxi’s, figuring out a route etc. During our day exploring Hue we took in the following:
Tomb of Minh Mang
Tomb of Khai Dinh
A local craft market
Tomb of Tu Duc
Thien Mu Pagoda
And finally, Hue Imperial City
Come the end of the tour we were beyond shattered, this and the overnight train really had done us in! Back to the hostel we went before venturing out for dinner at Mandarin Café which was recommended in the Lonely Planet guide: Southeast Asia on Shoestring.
Hue is a pretty place, however if you aren’t really into history I’m not sure I’d add it to a Vietnam itinerary as it is very centred around that.