KOREA 2015: Gyeongbokgung Palace & Gwanghwamun Plaza

Travel
Built in 1395, it probably is the most iconic landmark in Seoul, South Korea. The Gyeongbokgung or Gyeongbok Palace, was home to the Kings of the Joseon Dynasty. It also served as the seat of government for centuries.

Much of it was destroyed by fire during the Imjin War and was left abandoned for two centuries, but was later on restored in 19th century. However, much of it had once again been destroyed by Imperial Japan in the 20th century. After having been reconstructed gradually to its former glory, The Gyeongbok Palace is considered to be the grandest of The Five Grand Palaces built by the Joseon Dynasty. *Wikipedia

We went there very early in the morning to avoid the rush hour traffic in Seoul (yes, they have awful traffic too). The palace premises was still closed when we arrived, so we just walked to the nearby landmarks in Gwanghwamun Plaza, and the National Museum of Korean Contemporary History to pass time.

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King Sejong statue

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Admiral Yi Sun-sin statue

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A tribute to the victims of the Sewol Ferry tragedy

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National Museum of Korean Contemporary History

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Cute miniatures at the museum

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Anyway, when we got back to the palace, and it was already open. I was shocked to see so many tourists already!

The palace is MASSIVE, with not much shade, and it was very sunny that day! Those that know me, know that I’m not very much acquainted with the sun. haha I just hurriedly checked anything that I could find interesting as there were so many people, you could hardly get a shot at an area with no photobombers.

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The palace’s outer grounds

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I am very much interested in art, intricate patterns, carving, etc. So many people were pushing their way through to take a peek like there was something very exciting going on (one actually can’t enter in). I was one of them. It was actually just very simple, but there was something about it that was special. Or maybe it was just too colorful I guess. haha

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The main throne hall

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Looking out from the main throne hall

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A peek into the throne room

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Details

 

So I continued roaming around, and I found something which I thought was more beautiful than the main palace itself, the Gyeonghoeru Pavilion. They say it was the king’s reception area where he hosted important visitors, where he held parties and celebrations. It is a very beautiful structure surrounded by a man-made pond. Definitely very picturesque!

To wrap this up, all I can think of is that it was an unfortunate day to be there. It was too hot. But I guess, had it been a little cloudy on that day, I would’ve appreciated it more.

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The Gyeonghoeru Pavilion. Isn’t it magnificent?

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I just had to. haha

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Some people wearing the traditional Korean Hanbok

11 thoughts on “KOREA 2015: Gyeongbokgung Palace & Gwanghwamun Plaza

  1. South Korea is very much on my bucket list of places to go. I enjoyed reading your post and looking at your pictures.
    The third picture at the bottom, of the men in red traditional costumes, is my favorite.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Glad you enjoyed the article. I highly suggest you go and visit Korea soon! I personally never really wanted to go to Korea, but all that changed when I finally experienced it. It’s a lovely country. 🙂 And yes, it’s actually my favorite photo too! There were a lot of them, doing some random field demonstration. I’m not sure if it was some just taping or what ( as there were some cameras too).

      Liked by 1 person

      1. well, that’s great! I’m looking at maybe this October, and try Autumn there. It’s going to be my 3rd time. My first visit was in 2015, and I have gone back in 2016 (which I still haven’t written about). I guess, that’s how much I love Korea now. HAHA 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Fall should be exquisite there, I saw pictures of it.
        For me it was a toss up between Uzbekistan and South Korea for this year. Uzbekistan won, but South Korea hopefully next year.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post! I really love the third photo from the bottom (the one with the men dressed in red). It looks like you enjoyed your trip to Seoul, which is nice to know. I’m a traditional Korean costume maker here in Seoul, and I’ve had exhibitions of my work in Gyeongbok Palace : ) I thought you might be interested in my latest post about my Korean traditional wedding fashion show in Paris in 2011 –
    https://closetroyal.com/2017/02/16/my-fashion-show-in-paris-2011-le-grand-opera-ballroom-and-the-korean-uigwe/

    Liked by 1 person

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