Gyeongbokgung Palace

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The center of power during Korea's famed Joseon Dynasty, the Gyeongbokgung Palace complex, which includes the spectacular Gwanghwamun Gate, is one of the most visited and iconic sites in the whole country.

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The palace was originally completed in 1395, though it has been reconstructed several times over the years after multiple Japanese invasions. The original architecture style was imitated and maintained after the last major reconstruction post WWII.

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The changing of the guard ceremony takes place at the top of every hour from 11:00 to 15:00, and here are free guided tours given in English at 11:00, 13:00, and 15:30.

Before or after visiting Gyeongbokgung Palace, make sure to visit nearby Changdeokgung Palace, also built during the Joseon Dynasty, and its secret royal garden.