As you leave the MANDARIN CAFE, walk to your right a few meters to Hung Vuong street. Turn left and look ahed to one of the most famous landmarks of the city: the beautiful Truong Tien bridge which is constructed by the renowned Eiffel Construction Company from France. Built by the Friench in 1897, and rebuilt after the American War, it is today a beautiful symbol of Hue city. Be sure to come back at night when it is lit by ever-changing colored lights.
Once over the bridge, turn left on Tran Hung Dao street. As you wander past the many shops, be sure to notice the beautiful riverside park across the the street.Your first right turn will take you into the Citadel at the Thuong Tu gate, one of the eight gates into the old walled city built by the kings of the Nguyen dynasty. Construction began in 1802 and was intended to protect the ordinary citizens as well as the ImperialCity. You can see the walls are eight feet (almost 3 meters) thick.
Desighned with French help, the Citadel combined ancient Chinese models with modern European ideals. Once through the gate, and to your left is an outdoor display of old military equipment used by Liberation Forces and the Americans during the American War. Be sure to take a look at the Imperial Museum located on the next street behind the military display.
Strolling along the shaded streets, you will see the Ngan Gate and the ceremonial cannon on your left. You’ll need a picture taken standing next to the huge guns. It‘s hard to miss the flag can be seen from many parts of the city day and night. The massive building opposite the Flag Tower is the Ngo Mon Gate the entry into the old Imperial City where the royal family lived and ruled...As you walk across town, be sure to do a little shopping at one of the many stores. The owners are used to foreigners.
Another of the entry ways into the Citadel is the Dong Ba Gate. Built in 1841, it was the site of the first big battle between US Marines and entrenched Liberation Forces during the infamous Tet Offensive of 1968.Today, an old concrete bunker built by the Sai Gon regime is the only reminder of the horror that was war. The through many people live on the river, the largest sampan village is along Bach Dang street
Be sure to save some energy and money for a visit to the Dong Ba Market, the largest market in the city. But be sure to sharpen your bargaining skill. Tourists can see all the typical features of a traditional Vietnamese market, for example, the sampan landing, Hue conical poem hat, Tinh Tam lotus. Dong Ba market is considered as a paradise for snapshots of daily activities as well as for shopping with everything from souvenir items to bronze goods. It also serve you with Hue daily dish such as beef noodles, shrimp cakes, pancakes or "five-color" cakes in Lunar New Year (When biting the cake, you can feel that it seems to immediately melt in the mouth, which is of uniqueness of Hue’s). Hence, it’s advised that you try these as much as possible during your time in Hue, or else you will miss them so much after coming back to your country!
Now you have a choice. You can take a small ferry back across the river, or walk back across the bridge. The ferry landing is just to the left of the market-behind the women’s beauty shop. Once across the river, stroll along Le Loi Street and enjoy the street scenes. Either way you return, drop back by the MANDARIN CAFE and tell Mr. Cu of your experience.