Travel Destinations and Photo Spots
Located in Seoul, Gyeongbokgung Palace is the largest of 5 palaces in the city. The construction of the Palace and grounds was completed in 1395 but it suffered total destruction due to a fire during the Imjinwaeran War with Japan. The site was restored over time starting in 1868, unfortunately the palace was destroyed again under the Japanese occupation at the start of the 20th century.
The Korean government made it a priority to return the Palace and the grounds back to its original state and restoration work began in 1990. The rebuild was highly successful with the majority of structures now successfully restored.It is now a central hub for Korean pride and history for the public to access and appreciate. The Korean people are very proud of their heritage and the majority of visitors to palace grounds are Korean residents from Seoul and the surrounding cities.
The admission fee is 3000 won and this includes a free walking tour that is available in several different languages. If you decide that the tour isn’t for you or you would prefer to explore the grounds yourself then a map is available upon purchasing your ticket and you can choose what you would like to see.
The complex is vast; it has many different structures, bodies of water and lush greenery. I thoroughly enjoyed wandering around and taking photos almost everywhere I visited. The grounds never seem too crowded due to the sheer size; many of the visitors will stay around the main areas of the palace. I do recommend strolling through the gardens to see some of the smaller structures that have been restored.
One sight to be seen here is the changing of the guard that occurs three times a day at 10 am, 1 pm & 3 pm. The guards carry traditional weapons and instruments whilst in procession, also wearing bright colourful traditional uniforms as seen below.
There are many restaurants and cafes outside the palace grounds so you will not find it hard to choose a place for lunch or dinner. The walk from the subway is roughly 5 minutes and the directions are below. This is definitely a historical venue to add to your bucket list when visiting Seoul.
How to get there:
Subway: Get off at Gyeongbokgung Station, Seoul Metro Line 3, and Exit No. 5.