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Hoa Lư () was the capital of Vietnam in the 10th and 11th centuries. It lies in Truong Yen Thuong village, Truong Yen Commune, Hoa Lu District, Ninh Binh Province, Vietnam. The area is one of ricefields broken by picturesque limestone mountains, and is approximately 90 km south of Hanoi. Together with Phat Diem Church, Tam Coc – Bich Dong, Bai Dinh Pagoda, Trang An, and Cuc Phuong, Hoa Lu is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Ninh Binh Province.

In the late 10th century, Hoa Lu was the capital as well as the economic, political and cultural center of Đại Cồ Việt, an independent Vietnamese polity founded in 968 A.D. by the local warlord Đinh Bộ Lĩnh (posthumously known as Đinh Tiên Hoàng, or “First Dinh Emperor”), following years of civil war and a violent secessionist movement against China’s Southern Han Dynasty. Hoa Lu was the native land of the first two imperial dynasties of Vietnam: the Dinh founded by Đinh Tiên Hoàng, and the Early Le founded by Lê Đại Hành. Following the demise of the Le Dynasty, in 1010 Lý Công Uẩn, the founder of the Ly Dynasty, transferred the capital to Thắng Long (now Hanoi), and Hoa Lu became known as the “ancient capital.”

The capital at Hoa Lu covered an area of 300 ha (3.0 km2), including both the Inner and Outer Citadels. It included defensive earthen walls, palaces, temples and shrines, and was surrounded and protected by mountains of limestone. Today, the ancient citadel no longer exists, and few vestiges of the 10th century remain. Visitors can see temples built in honor of the emperors Dinh Tien Hoang and Le Dai Hanh, their sons, and Queen Duong Van Nga, who was married first to Dinh Tien Hoang and then to Le Dai Hanh. The tomb of Dinh Tien Hoang is located on nearby Mã Yên mountain, while the tomb of Le Dai Hanh lies at the foot of the mountain.

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