Friday, October 8, 2010

Korea Report: Deoksugung Palace

I originally planned to go to Gyeongbokgung Palace which is the main and largest palace of the Five Grand Palaces built by the Joseon Dynasty.  Good thing I researched online and learned the palace was close on a Tuesday so I chose to go to the 2nd choice palace instead --- Deoksugung or Deoksu Palace which means the “Palace of Virtue and Longevity”

Deoksugung is a walled compound of palaces in Seoul and housed various Korean Royalties way back until the Japanese came at the turn of 20th century.  Base on research, this is a palace built with Western Style.  Due to the destruction, it was sad to learn that only one third of the structures that were standing before the Japanese  Occupation remains.

The main entrance of Deoksugung Palace called Daehanmun Gate

Adult ticket costs 1,000 Won (approx Php40.00/less than $1.00)
Children (7 to 18 years old) 500 Won (approx Php20.00/less than $.50)

Had a photo op with this guy standing in front of the main palace gate!  He actually does not look bad!  Quite handsome!

Acting silly with one of the guard!  Good thing he did not use that same sword and stab me! hahahha

After we walked through the  main entrance door, we've decided not to use a map as the palace isn't that huge anyways!  We moved straight to Junghwajeon Hall.

Junghwajeon Hall was the main throne hall of Deoksugung Palace built in 1902.  This hall served as the main throne hall of Deoksu palace and was used for ceremonial occasions such as coronations and receiving of foreign envoys.  Now, don't we look like foreign dignitaries? .... NOT! hahahaha

Two lines of court stones can be seen in front of the hall.  These stones were engraved and at first, we thought its a "grave" or something but after eavesdropping on the tour guides near us  *hahahha*  We learned that these stone tablets indicates each civil and military official of the court to stand during official ceremonies

Opening hours to get in is every Saturday from 9:00am to 4:00pm.  I think only 20 visitors are allowed to get in each time for safety of visitors and preservation of the area.

The gorgeous architecture inside the hall
Thanks to Mr. AMW's zoom lens!

Details of the ceiling
Gorgeous 2 dragons
I think during the olden times, dragon symbolizes power and fortune

Another close up on the ceiling details, 
I love how old yet intricate the details are. 

Junmyeongdang Hall

The place where Emperor Gojong received honored guests and foreign envoys.  This was once turned in kindergarten for Princess Deokhye.

Side story, Princess Deokhye is the daughter of Emperor Gojong who led a tragic life.  She was sent to Japan to study at 11 years old and got married to a Japanese man of noble birth at 20, unfortunately, she was abused and was able to get back to Korea in the 1960s.  Remained in the mental hospital and died in 1989.  So sad right?

Seogeodang Hall
The only hall without any painting as King Seonjo (1567-1608) was more concerned with the hardship of the people during the war so this was advised to be unpainted.  He stayed and passed away here.

I love how innovative people from the past are!  Look at the doors and how they open and close it.

A fuel hole for ondol to warm up the hall especially on winter season.

Statue of King Sejong the Great

A random shot inside the palace.  Trying to catch the attention of the palace guard *lol* 

After the historical visit inside the palace.  We've decided  to take a break from restaurants and go for fast food!  KFC!  Ordered Chicken Bulgogi Burger plus fries and egg tart!  Yummy!

Opening Hours:
9:00am to 9:00pm

Admission is permitted until one hour before closing
Closed on Mondays

Are you into historical tours?  I've always been interested with the history of each place I visit!

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!


  1. I am too, i love visiting historical places when I do get to travel.

  2. This is why I love Oriental art. Wherever you go, basta Asian country...the architecture, visual arts etc. are always so intricate.

  3. I'd love to visit one of the palaces in Korea! ^.^ and I also love KFC's egg tart haha

  4. cute you two..Wow!!..Will visit korea someday..=)..

  5. lovely photos Nikki! looks like you really enjoyed your trip there :)

  6. wah!
    bulgogi burger!
    we don't have it here but i sure would want to taste it

    you & mr amw always look sooooo cute!

    thanks for the tour of the palace!

  7. The details inside the palace are astounding! Really beautiful. You look so cute fooling around with the guard. Good to know you're having a blast! :P

  8. Kitten, I love learning about the culture! :) Same with you right?

    Skysenshi, I know, super intricate and you just can't imagine the time and effort they've spent for such wonderful creation~

    Chelle, oohh I am thinking about the egg tart at this very moment!

  9. Angiepink, it's definitely a must visit! I am happy I saved up for this trip!

    Charry, I did! I am still missing the place!

  10. ~tHiAmErE~, I wish we have different versions of burgers like in Korea down here! It'll be a blast! Like United Nation day and we get to have different country's specialty burger once a week!

    Pammy, hahahah I did ask for permission to fool around, the guard was super nice!

  11. Many of my students offer touring me around Korea... I wish I have a lot of money to go! hahaha!!! Anyway, Im glad to see your pictures... =)

    Ya! King Sejeong!!! The great inventor of the Hangeul!!! ^__~

  12. Angelamhiere, go go go! Save up and then much better to have someone from Korea tour you around :) :) :)

  13. I enjoyed reading your blog, esp these about your Korea trip. Nice pictures too.

    Im just wondering, who took your pictures with Mr. AMW? Did you you use a tripod?

  14. Tricia, yup! Tripod it is! :) Thanks for liking the photos!


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