Prior to the Japanese invasion of Seoul, Gyeonghuigung Palace was a massive compound with over 100 buildings. Much of the palace was destroyed, however, after the 1908 invasion, leaving a small but spectacular structure for learning Korea’s history. Conveniently located in western Seoul, this was one of the city’s “Five Grand Palaces” that were constructed in the 1600s, and the palace grounds that stand here today are part of a large-scale government effort to restore the ancient heritage. Though many of the gates and buildings have been moved from their original palace locations, there’s still a serene, regal feel to wandering the royal grounds, and relaxing in buildings where kings used to spend their holiday time and vacations. This was often a secondary palace location, although ten different kings resided here over nearly 300 years. You can visit the palace as part of a historical walking tour of Seoul, or independently tour the grounds to learn some ancient culture.
Insider's Tip: Combine a trip to Gyeonghuigung Palace with nearby Deoksugung Palace. It’s also close to the Seoul Museum of History, and the surrounding streets are considered some of the Seoul’s most beautiful roads.
The Gyeonghuigung Palace has restrooms and parking, although there’s a parking charge of $2.50 for the first two hours, and $.50 for each 5 minutes after. If you plan to explore the area on foot, opt for the $12, all-day parking. Visitors are asked to dress appropriately and respectfully for visiting the temple.