Tag Archives: culture

Snapshots from Seoul: Gyeongbokgung Palace

9 Jul

It might have been ages since I went to South Korea but as I was browsing through my folders of photos and unpublished entries, I realised that I wasn’t able to post this yet. I felt that I still should show them to you because I liked this place. Like the other places  of interest we visited in South Korea, we did not spend that much time here so my documentation is incomplete. Nevertheless, please indulge me 🙂

Gyeongbokgung Palace is right beside the National Folk Museum of Korea so we did not enter by the main gate. It was kind of unfortunate since I was looking forward to seeing the changing of guards. Anyway, there’s always a next time, right? I’m not sure which gate we entered but it was not far from the Queen’s Quarters.

Located in northern Seoul, Gyeongbokgung Palace is the main and largest palace built by the Joseon Dynasty. It was really awesome walking at the palace grounds seeing the different buildings and rooms with its intricate designs (where around 40% were restored to its original state after being nearly destroyed by the Japanese) and knowing that this ancient glory is actually right in the middle of a vibrant and modern city.

Here are some of the photos I took… Please enjoy and be transported to South Korea’s Joseon Dynasty…

how colourful and unique is this roof !

beautiful buildings

Gyotaejeon – The Queen’s Quarters

Gyeonghoeru – Royal Banquet Hall

Geunjeongjeon – Throne Hall

King’s throne in the center

courtyard

Geunjeongmun – the main gate to the courtyard and Geunjeongjeon (Throne Hall)

Gyeongbokgung Palace is right within the city, a perfect mix of the old and the new.

Palace grounds

outside the palace… and some random Han River pictures (taken from the bus ;))

If ever I go back to Seoul, I will definitely revisit Gyeongbokgung Palace and explore more of the history behind the buildings and the palace itself. My friends and sister have been here and I know there is also a place within the palace grounds where you can “borrow” a hanbok (traditional Korean dress) for that most memorable photo opportunity!

Gyeongbokgung Palace is definitely a must-visit in Seoul, especially if you’re into history and culture or just a plain Korean drama fangirl 🙂 I think there are quite a few sageuk (historical dramas/ plays) shot here.

Aside from shopping, what do you look for and are eager to experience when you travel to a foreign country? Care to share?

Hope you all have a good Monday!

Cheers 🙂

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Snapshots from Seoul: The National Folk Museum of Korea

30 Apr

One of the places we (our tour group) visited when I went to Seoul is The National Folk Museum of Korea. Located in the heart of Seoul and right next to Gyeongbokgung Palace, the national museum features over 98,000 artifacts and comprises of three exhibition halls.

According to the website,the Three Exhibition Halls are:

“1.) History of Korean People – which displays the representative materials of everyday life and customs in Korea from prehistoric to modern times.

“2.) The Korean Way of Life – which illustrates how Korean life of the Joseon period (1392-1910) revolved around the cycles of nature central to an agricultural society.

“3.) Life Cycle of Koreans – which traces the  major events in the life of  a Korean born into the upper class of Joseon (1392-1910)  society.”

Credits to The National Folk Museum of Korea website that can be accessed here.

The National Folk Museum of Korea also holds open-air exhibitions and special classes such as traditional crafts workshop and traditional music and dance for foreign visitors. There is also a Donation Hall to recognise those who have donated family heirlooms permanently to the museum as well as a souvenir shop where you can find books, replicas, artwork, fans, magnets, pens, and the list goes on…

Here are some of the photos I took. Apologies for the picture quality as camera flash is not allowed inside the museum halls. Please click the photos to enlarge 😉

The National Folk Museum Building

entrance

(I’m sorry I can’t remember the name of the mountain ;))

another side

Clothes worn on 1st birthday (yellow and red hanbok for boy and girl, respectively)

Wedding Ceremony

Bridal Palanquin

I’m not too sure if it’s a funeral pyre. (sorry!)

Clothes and Head dress depending on position in society

Another set of clothes and head dress

Throne Hall at Gyeongbokgung Palace

I don’t have a lot of pictures because I forgot to take them as I read and looked through the displays.

I love museums and I am always fascinated by learning more about the history, culture and way of life of a certain place, country, group of people, etc.  What is also so awesome was the fact that the things I used to just see in historical Korean dramas were right before my very eyes.

It was also cool to be allowed to take pictures inside the museum 🙂 I hope you enjoyed looking through the pictures albeit not really complete and comprehensive (some pictures have my face :). My last “Snapshots from Seoul” entry is coming up… Guess what it will be about? 😉

Do you enjoy getting lost and immersed in museum exhibits? What’s your favourite museum? Care to share?

Cheers 🙂

Snapshots from Seoul: Incheon International Airport

24 Mar

NOTE: Incheon International Airport is not actually in Seoul but in Incheon (a city on the northwest part of South Korea) but for the sake of uniformity of my travel accounts in Seoul, I’m keeping the same heading 🙂

Incheon International Airport is South Korea’s biggest airport and has been voted as “world’s best airport” for a few years in a row.

Like my other posts, I did not have enough time to explore the different places we have visited and that’s what happened with our airport experience, too. I wasn’t able to see all the wonderful facilities it offers like the spa, skating rink, museum, gardens, and even the duty free shops.

Oh, another good thing about the airport is the free WiFi which is tops! The airport has also a train that connects to the airport’s other boarding gates.

It was also a breath of fresh air to not experience a hassle with the check-in process (I was in a group tour and we check in as a group. It was a long and strenous wait when we departed Bangkok, not to mention the chaotic immigration queue which took over an hour) and the immigration queue was a breeze.

Anyway, I was really delighted to catch the cultural parade in the airport. It was an apt farewell to us, tourists, who were bound to boarding our planes and going back home.

They play the roles of King and Queen from the Joseon Dynasty

I may have only seen perhaps 10% of the airport but compared to all the other airports in countries I have been to, I can say that Incheon International Airport is definitely one of the best!

Which other airports impressed you? Care to share?

Cheers 🙂