"Gyeongbokgung - Part III" Gyeongbokgung Palace Tip by mke1963

Gyeongbokgung Palace, Seoul: 94 reviews and 225 photos


In 1592, the palace was burnt to the ground and Changdukgung, nearby, became the seat of power in the country. It was to remain in ruins until 1868 when it was restored to its former glory and King Gojong moved in. But the legacy of unhappiness at Gyeongbukgung was not yet over, for in 1895, Queen Min was savagely murdered by Japanese assassins in her bedroom along with her maids. The distraught Gojong left for the relative safety of the Russian legation and then to the nearby Deoksugung. Concepts of distance and safety were different in those days, as Deoksugung is only twenty minutes walk from Gyeongbukgong.
Gyeongbukgung, for all its splendour, has a sad air about it: so much promise and so much beauty, yet a constant reminder of occupation, invasion and internal power struggles. The complex has been partially restored, including the removal of an ugly building constructed by the Japanese simply to hide the palace from the citizens of Seoul.

Individual elements and areas of this huge and interesting complex are reviewed separately, and with the National Folk Museum lying within its grounds, it would be easy to spend half a day wandering through Korea?s regal history. For those who like a feel for the historical context of important sites, I would recommend going to the Folk Museum first, as this superb museum provides a well-structured background to what you will see in the palaces and monuments of the city. If you do this, make sure to walk round the outside of Gyeongbukgung to enter the palace by its front gate. (If you enter from the ?north gate? you will come across all the beautiful buildings from the back!)

Address: Top of Sejongno
Phone: +82 2-3700-3900
Website: http://www.royalpalace.go.kr:8080/

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Apr 23, 2005
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