PALACE QUARTER

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“A Walk to the Ancient Palace that Breathes History”

GwanghwamunCheonggyecheon – JongnoInsa-dongSamcheong-deong – Bukcheon

     Travel 600 years back through time to ancient palaces and structures, such as: Gyeongbokgung Palace where the 500 year history of Joseon Dynasty began; Jongmyo where you can watch traditional Confucius rituals; and Changdeokgung Palace, which is loved by everybody for its beautiful landscape. All these ancient scenes that breathe Korean History are waiting for visitors at the center of the city.

     Gwanghwamun, whose literal meaning is “a gate from which humane politics reach out in all directions”, is fronted by Sejong-daero, the widest road in Korea that is 100 meters wide and 600 meters long.

     On Gwanghwamu Square, you can find the statue of King Sejong the Great, who invented the Korean writing system Hangeul, and farther down from there, the statue of the great admiral Yi Sun-shin, who protected Joseon from the offshore invaders. To the side you can find Sejongno Park where a total of 11,172 permutations of the Korean alphabet are compiled into a public artwork, testifying the greatness of Hangeul. At Insa-dong and Samcheong-dong, you will see alleys and streets lined with arts and crafts workshops, galleries, and tea houses, the majority of which have been remodeled from the traditional hanok structures. However, over 900 hanok houses still remain in their original shapes at Bukchon Hanok village, reminiscent of the past days of the city.

     Now, move forward on your journey from the past to present, and head to Cheonggyecheon (Stream), a recently reconstructed ecology stream. Originally a popular spot either for doing laundry or just playing around, it has now become a popular hang-out among Seoul citizens. Take a break from your busy itinerary, and listen to the stories associated with the 22 bridges built over the stream, which flows 10.48km from Gwanghwamun Gate to Dongdaemun under these historic structures and into present day Seoul.

Highlights

Gyeonbokgung Gyeongbokgung, whose literal meaning is “wish for your blessing and prosperity”, is the largest and the most majestic of all five ancient palaces that remain in Seoul today. (Read more Here)

Cheonggyecheon  The restoredd ecology stream that stretches from Gwanghwamun to Dongdaemun is all the more beautiful under the lighting late at night. The Seoul Lantern Festival that opens in November is one of the sights you should not miss while visiting Seoul. (Read more Here)

Insa-dong Street Stroll around the streets of Insa-dong either to shop for beautiful crafts and souvenirs at the craft workshops and galleries, or to walk into a traditional tea house and experience traditional Korean teas. (Read more Here)

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