Dien Khanh Old Citadel – A Heroic Historical Witness in Khanh Hoa Province

Located in Khanh Hoa Province, Dien Khanh Old Citadel stands as a vivid testament to the heroic history, transporting visitors back to distant centuries. Exploring the ancient citadel is not just a cultural journey but also an opportunity to delve into legends, traditions, and the arduous struggles of generations past. Let’s delve into Dien Khanh Old Citadel with Boma Nha Trang in the following article.

Where is Dien Khanh Old Citadel?

Situated in the town of Dien Khanh, Khanh Hoa Province, Dien Khanh Old Citadel is a vibrant panorama of history, taking travelers back to the glorious past and power of the Khanh Hoa region. Just 10km west of downtown Nha Trang, this location is not only a prominent architectural relic but also a witness to significant events in the development of the coastal city of Nha Trang.

Dien Khanh Old Citadel, once holding a strategically important position in the South Central region, is a living witness to the ups and downs of history. The intact stone walls and ancient architectural structures not only offer a spectacle for visitors but also serve as windows to a mysterious past.

A glimpse into the history of Dien Khanh Old Citadel

After the passing of King Quang Trung, the Tay Son dynasty experienced a period of decline and territorial loss. In 1793, Nguyen Anh, one of the Nguyen dynasty kings, seized the opportunity by marching to conquer Dien Khanh. Recognizing the strategic value of this land, he decided to build a sturdy fortress, a crucial base to defend the new territory.

Prince Canh, entrusted with the construction, led over 3,000 laborers to acceleratfe the building of Dien Khanh Citadel in just one month. Once the residence of Dien Khanh, it became the political and administrative center of Binh Khang palace (now Dien Khanh district). Dien Khanh Old Citadel is not only a historical symbol but also a cultural heritage, preserving valuable military, architectural, and artistic values.

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Every brick, every stone wall at Dien Khanh Old Citadel tells a story, a profound question mark about time. This heritage is living evidence of human strength and a significant turning point in the country’s history. When visiting Dien Khanh, tourists not only sense the historical atmosphere but also immerse themselves in the ancient architectural beauty, blending into the concealed space of a bygone era.

The unique Vauban structure of Dien Khanh Old Citadel in Nha Trang

Dien Khanh Old Citadel is not just a museum preserving history; it is also a unique architectural masterpiece following the Vauban style, a prevalent military fortification model in Western Europe in the 17th-18th centuries. The fortress walls, built with earth, form an irregular hexagon, with each side divided into multiple winding sections, creating exquisite perspectives from every angle.

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The entrance gate impresses visitors with a quadrangular tower structure, curved roof tiles embodying Yin and Yang, and four directional doors. The gate’s two sides have high railings, and the central path is created by wide stairs about 3m in width. Stepping into Dien Khanh Old Citadel, visitors not only admire the unique architecture of the fortress but also immerse themselves in the historical space, experiencing the era’s power through each brick and architectural line.

Standing on the fortress walls like a mighty warrior, you become part of a magnificent scene, providing an exciting experience of exploring the mysterious past of the red land of Dien Khanh.

Restoration plan for Dien Khanh Old Citadel by the Khanh Hoa Provincial People’s Committee

Dien Khanh Old Citadel, a silent witness of the ups and downs and the fierce struggles of the Khanh Hoa people in two epic resistance wars against the French and the Americans, was classified as a national historical-cultural relic on November 16, 1988.

With a history of over 200 years, Dien Khanh Old Citadel is not only a masterpiece of medieval architecture but also a living museum of a glorious past. Covered in moss and erosion, the architectural soul remains intact. In 2003, the restoration project revived the four gates and repaired cracks exposed to rain and wind. The 2010 restoration project by the Department of Culture, Sports, and Tourism of Khanh Hoa Province was a significant milestone, emphasizing the preservation and conservation of the heritage value.

In late 2014, a decision by the Khanh Hoa Provincial People’s Committee relocated administrative and military offices from within Dien Khanh Citadel, creating a new space – a pedestrian street – with the mission to recreate and honor historical traces. Each brick, each road, each gate is a story, a testament to the talent of our ancestors, waiting for visitors to discover with each step.

Dien Khanh Old Citadel is indeed a living museum of medieval times, bringing visitors back to the glorious past of Khanh Hoa Province.

See also: Christ the King Cathedral in Nha Trang


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