The two ancient royal palaces in Seoul are connected with Saemungil Museam Street and Sejong Main Street. I first went to Gyungbokgung Palace and then I walked down to Changdeokgung Palace, spending a lot of time in the underground museum with its entrance at the statue of a seated King Sejong The Great. I only made it to the entrance of the second palace, and plan to go inside tomorrow.
My 'home' station, the one closest to the hotel. 'Young dump-o' helps me to remember it.
A street scene outside Gwanghwamun station. Lots of (Korean-made) Hyundai and Kia cars on the streets, of course.
Here the layout of the two palaces that shows how they are connected with the Museum Street and Sojong Main Street. Watch for following pictures of the two statues on the Main Street.
These two stony-faced guys are outside the Seoul National Museum of Korea.
This is the first entrance to the Gyungbokgung Palace. First constructed in 1394 and reconstructed in 1867, it was the main and largest palace of the Five Grand Palaces built by the Joseon Dynasty. The original palaces consisted of hundreds of buildings on many acres.
The corner of the main palace hall. There is an on-going reconstruction effort to restore more of the original buildings.
A peek is given to visitors into the inside of the main palace building. That's the throne with golden dragon decorations.
This ine is for my Seattle readers and friends! I'm in the traffic mirror, and that figure with the hammer in the background is exactly the same one we have in downtown Seattle in front of the Art Museum. Hmm, which one was first? I will have to check into it.
Here is the monument for the legendary Admiral Yi Sun-sin. He is one of the most revered figures in Korean history - an oustanding leader, strategist and ship-builder and died in late 1598, in the Battle of Noryang, the final confrontation of the Imjin War with the Japanese.
Admiral Yi's famous 'turtle ship' with a closed deck.
This is a 1:55 wooden scale model of a turtle ship inside the museum.
This picture from a short documentary shown inside the museum of the wars that raged in the Korean islands around 1600. Those ships with the rising sun flags are Japanese, of course .. and a bloody sea battle is about to start.
This is King Sejong the great (hold still kids, so mom can take a nice picture!). He appears on Korean bank notes, and is credited with using military technology (think cannons and gunpowder) to strengthen his kingdom. He is also credited with creating Hangul, the Korean characters what are in wide use today for the written language. 1397, t
Here's the entrance to Changdeokgung Palace. I haven't gone inside yet.
A mural on the street promoting Seoul.
This is Jongno Tower, a 33-story office building owned by Samsung Securities. It was built in 1999.