Korean Forest, Cut Off By Japan, Reconnected in 90 Years

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The Seoul City reconnected Changgyeonggung and Jongmyo for the first time in 90 years.

  • Changgyeonggung is a palace built in the mid-15th century by King Sejong for his father, Taejong.
  • Jongmyo is a royal shrine dedicated for the deceased kings and queens of the Joseon Dynasty. It’s known to be the oldest royal Confucian shrine preserved and was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1995.

A big, one forest was connecting Changgyeonggung and Jongmyo with a fence, but in 1932, the Japanese Empire opened the ‘Jongmyo Passing Road’ (Yulgok-ro), separating Changgyeonggung and Jongmyo. ‘Bukshinmum’, an unofficial gate the kings used to visit Jongmyo, also disappeared during the process.

The fence and the ‘Bukshinmum’ were restored and a green space was built to connect the palace and the shrine on top of Yulgok-ro, which was rebuilt as an underground road.

Along the restored palace fence, a ‘palace fence street’ has been created where people can walk while feeling the footsteps of the Joseon Dynasty.

The green space will be open to the public from July 22, 2022.

The dotted circle in the picture below is where the reconnected forest is located.

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