Gwanghwamun Gate

Main Gate Of Gyeongbokgung Palace
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Gwanghwamun Gate, the main gate of Gyeongbokgung Palace in Seoul

Gwanghwamun Gate, the main gate of Gyeongbokgung Palace

Gwanghwamun Gate is the imposing main gate of Gyeongbokgung Palace. The gate has been rebuilt many times over the years but remains an icon of Seoul. There are three other gates that can be found along the 2,404 meters (7,887 feet) of walls surrounding the palace. The other three gates are Sinmumun, Geonchunmun, and Yeongchumun.

Construction began in 1395 at the beginning of the Joseon dynasty. It quickly became one of the most important gates of the Joseon Dynasty since it guarded the main palace.

The gate consists of three entrances and a two story pavilion. At one time, it was guarded by watchtowers.

In 1592, the gate was destroyed by the Japanese during their invasion of Korea during Imjin War. In 1867, almost 250 years later, it was reconstructed along with Gyeongbokgung Palace.

Gwanghwamun Gate viewed from the side

Gwanghwamun viewed from the side

In 1926, the Japanese who occupied Korea at the time, moved Gwanghwamun near the location of the present day National Folk Museum of Korea. They did this to make room for the new Japanese Governor General Building.

During the Korean War, the wooden gatehouse was destroyed once again. It was rebuilt using concrete and remained this way until 2006.

In December 2006, work began to restore Gwanghwamun to its original wooden specifications. This restoration work paid close attention to historical accuracy and location. On August 15, 2010, restoration was completed at a cost of 28 billion won ($24 million).

Guarding Gwanghwamun Gate at Gyeongbokgung Palace

Palace guard

Read more about other gates in Seoul.



Sights

Gwanghwamun Square

Gwanghwamun Square Thumb


Gwanghwamun Square is a public area located in the heart of central Seoul that features museums, statues, restaurants, and beautiful surrounding views.

Read more about Gwanghwamun Square


Directions To Gwanghwamun Gate

  • Gwanghwamun is located at the entrance to Gyeongbokgung.

    Option 1
    Take Subway Line 3 to Gyeongbokgung Station (Exit 5).

    Option 2
    Take Subway Line 5 to Gwanghwamun Station (Exit 2).

Hours

  • 24 hours

Fees

  • The gate is free to view and walk through. The palace requires a ticket to enter.

Map

  • GPS Coordinates (Longitude and Latitude) of Gwanghwamun Gate : 37.576068, 126.976955.

 
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