|On guard: Dong Khuyet Dai, which was originally built as a military watch station, is expected to lure tourists to tour the ancient palace. — VNS Photo Phuoc Buu
THUA THIEN HUE (VNS)— A watch station that was originally built by the first king of the Nguyen dynasty (1802-45) in the royal palace in Hue has been restored.
Two years after forming the dynasty, King Gia Long built four military watch stations on top of the palace's fencing walls to the east, west, south, and north, naming the watch stations, respectively, Dong Khuyet Dai, Tay Khuyet Dai, Nam Khuyet Dai and Bac Khuyet Dai.
Yesterday, the Hue Monuments Complex Centre announced the successful restoration of the Dong Khuyet Dai at a cost of VND11billion (US$523,000), funded by the centre's budget.
The construction included a wooden building in the centre, small gardens at two sides, a brick yard and walls, and two stairs leading to the watch station, resembling what used to exist on the site.
Of note, researchers have failed to learn why the dynasty kings preferred Dong Khuyet Dai and spent many times more for restorations, compared to the three other watch stations.
The centre's managers have said they expect to have a complete system of the royal palace restored, with the station being one of the renovated sites.
The restored watch station is expected to lure more visitors to the site, as it offers views of the adjacent royal gardens, Vuon Co Ha, and Hien Nhon Gate, which leads visitors from the palace to the nearby Museum of Royal Artifacts.
According to the centre's director, the completion of the restoration is to meant to coincide with the celebration of Viet Nam's Heritage Day on November 22. — VNS