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  • Teissa Oxford

Khai Dinh Mausoleum

Hue, Vietnam

Visit Khai Dinh’s Mausoleum. Khai Dinh was built between 1920 and 1932. It is the last of the mausoleums of the Nguyen Dynasty, and by the time Khai Dinh was contemplating the afterlife, rich had given way to concrete. The valley, cultivated to cassava and sugar cane, and the pine-covered mountains, make this one of the most beautifully located and peaceful of the tombs.

Before construction could begin, Khai Dinh had to remove the tombs of Chinese nobles who had already selected the site for its beauty and auspicious orientation.

127 steep steps lead up to the Honour Courtyard with statuary of mandarins, elephants and horses. An octagonal Stele Pavilion in the center of the mourning yard contains a stone stele with an eulogy to the Emperor. At the top of some more stairs, are the tomb and shrine of Khai Dinh, containing a bronze statue of the Emperor sitting on his throne and holding a jade spectre. The body is interred 27 feet below ground level. The interior is richly decorated with ornate and colorful murals, floor tiles, and decorations built up with fragments of porcelain. It is the most elaborate of all the tombs and took 11 years to build.

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