Matsimitsu

Day Five

South Korea - Gyeongbokgung Palace, The War Memorial and Banpo Bridge


Gyeongbokgung Palace

When we arrived at the Gyeongbokgung site, we could hear some drums playing in the distance. Turns out it was the changing of the guards cerimony.

Gate house at Geunjeogmum Guards at Geunjeogmum
Guard with spear/sword at Geunjeogmum Guard at Geunjeogmum
Guard with sword at Geunjeogmum Big drum at Geunjeogmum

After that it was time to get ticket and see the palace.

Geunjeogmum entrance
Geunjeogmum with skyscraper in the background Geunjeogmum roof
Geunjeogmum Gate with cityscape in the background

Gyeongbokgung Palace (경복궁)

Gyeongbokgung Palace, also known as Gyeongbokgung was the main royal palace of the Joseon dynasty. It was built in 1395.

Gyeongbokgung served as the home of Kings of the Joseon dynasty, the Kings' households, as well as the government of Joseon

Pillars at Geunjeogmum Roof ornaments at Geunjeogmum
Geunjeogmum
Geunjeogmum Inside of building at Geunjeogmum
Buildings at Geunjeogmum

Bukchon village

After wandering the palace grounds for a while, we exited on the right and made our way to Bukchon village, a nice little area where residents live in traditional built houses.

Dongshipjagak
Bukchon Hanok Village Bukchon Hanok Village

We found a little tea shop at the 4th floor of a building with a lookout over the village. It was a nice 30 degrees, but with open windows, a soft breeze and delicious tea it was a really nice place to relax.

Bukchon Hanok Village
Bukchon Hanok Village Bukchon Hanok Village
Bukchon Hanok Village Panorama of Bukchon Hanok Village rooftops

Seoul

Just going to plop this down here, just so you know we're still in Seoul.

Our hotel was in the center of the city, which meant we could either walk or take the subway everywhere, super convenient.

When a subway train enters the station they play a fanfare tune, pretty cool! Be sure to get a T-Money Card to easily tap in/out.

Seoul
JINJOOShell near Bukchon Hanok Village

Time for lunch, delicious noodles and then on to the Korean War Memorial.

Stairs in Bukchon Hanok Village Alley in Bukchon Hanok Village
Noodles

But not before stopping at a temple.

Temple in Seoul
Temple in Seoul Temple in Seoul

Korean War Memorial

Technically Korea is still at war, and this memorial houses the names of all that have fallen. Including a number of Dutch soldiers who faught in the Korean war.

Korean war memorial
Korean war memorial Korean war memorial
Korean war memorial Korean war memorial

Next to the memorial was a static display with tons of vehicles/boats/helicopters that were used in the war.

Boat on display at the Korean war memorial Armoured vehicles at the Korean war memorial
Korean war memorial

Inspired by a certain song we decided to check out Gangnam. Like every destination today, we take the subway to reach it. It's one of the most clean and efficient subways I've come across.

Seoul subway

Bongeunsa Temple

Our original plan was to go to a park, but it was closed this Monday. This Bhuddist temple was a good replacement though.

Bongeunsa Temple Bongeunsa Temple
Bongeunsa Temple bell with Coex in the background Bongeunsa Temple bell
Bongeunsa Temple

The contrast between this rustic temple and the skyscrapers/shopping malls in the background.

Bongeunsa Temple with skyscraper in the background
Bongeunsa Temple Bongeunsa Temple
Bongeunsa Temple with skyscrapers in the background
Bongeunsa Temple Art at Bongeunsa Temple
Statue at Bongeunsa Temple

Gangnam

Time to get some dinner and wander around Gangnam.

Office buildings in Gangnam
Office buildings in Gangnam Office buildings in Gangnam

Banpo Bridge

After dinner it was dark, and we made our way to the Banpo Bridge across the Han River that splits Seoul in two.

Gangnam at night Gangnam at night Banpo bridge

Every night at certain times the bridge comes to life with water jets and lights, revealing why it's also called The Rainbow Bridge.

Banpo bridge Banpo bridge
Banpo bridge

After the show, we crossed the bridge to a station that would take us back to our hotel.

Railway crossing near Seobinggo Seobinggo