Mount Ngự Bình
Ngu Binh (Vietnamese: Núi Ngự Bình) is a mountain in the Vietnamese city of Huế.
The annals "Dai Nam Nhat Thong Chi" by the History Department of the Nguyễn Dynasty wrote about Ngu Binh Mountain as follows: "In the northeast of Huong Thuy emerges an even surface serving as a screen, a first bar in front of the citadel. It was called Nui Bang (Even Mount) and renamed Ngu Binh in Gia Long's reign. Its top is flat with pine trees everywhere".
The 105m high Ngu Binh Mountain has a striking and symmetric figure. On both sides of the Even Mount (Bang Son) are 2 small mounts called Ta Bat Son (Left Mount) and Huu Bat Son (Right Mount). After observing that Bang Son resembled a screen, the Nguyễn Dynasty decided to build up Huế which became known as their "Forbidden Purple City." Emperor Gia Long approved the design of geomancers which chose this mount as a front altar of the imposing and solid defending wall system, and renamed it Ngu Binh.
Together with the Perfume River, Ngu Binh Mountain is the second invaluable gift endowed by nature to Huế. These two complement each other creating the romantic mountain and river beauty of Huế. For a long time, this beautiful mountain and the Perfume River have been the symbols of Huế, and people often call Huế, "The land of the Perfume River and Ngu Binh mount" or "Huong-Ngu Land".
For many centuries, many generations of poets and travelers have recognized it a wonderful place to admire nature. On fine days, from the top of Ngu Binh Mount, people can view all the sights of the city of Huế with its magnificent palaces, ancient pagodas and the Perfume River winding in and out... Right in front of people's eyesight stretch boundless pine forests on the hills and large plains of Huong Thuy, Phu Vang, Huong Tra Districts with green plants and trees. In the distance, the dark purple Truong Son Mountain range lies hidden behind silver clouds... Towards the east is a dim white sand strip and Thuan An Estuary in the distance along the deep blue Eastern Sea.
Some kilometers away from Ngu Binh Mountain is Vong Canh hill, another beautiful spot in Huế which reflects itself charmingly in the Perfume River, across from Ngoc Tran Mountain. From the Vong Canh hill, people can behold fruit gardens green with areca (betel nut) palms, longan trees, orange groves (including mandarin variety), grapefruit trees, etc. Mingling with pine trees, grey roofs of pagodas and temples, as well as the ancient and meditative tombs, the Perfume River looks like a soft silk strip winding at the foot of the hill.
Once tourists come here at mist fading dawn or in sunset, they will understand and be touched by the romantic beauty of the hills, the river, a corner of Huế's sky...