This gallery contains 9 photos.
The Westin Chosun Hotel is the grande dame of Seoul’s hospitality scene. It originated as an act of cultural desecration. In 1913, the Japanese destroyed the Hwangudan Altar – Seoul’s equivalent of the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, where the … Continue reading
This gallery contains 15 photos.
In 1910, Imperial Japan annexed Korea forcefully, culminating a process that began with the Meiji Emperor in 1876. The Joseon capital of Hanseong was renamed 京城 – read as “Kei-jo” in Japanese, and “Gyeongseong” in Korean – and designated the … Continue reading
This gallery contains 16 photos.
In October 1897, King Gojong – the last King of the Joseon Dynasty – declared independence from Qing China and proclaimed the formation of the Daehan Jeguk, or the Korean Empire from the confines of the Deoksugung Palace. Just a … Continue reading
This gallery contains 26 photos.
We start our tour of Seoul from when it was called Hanseong 漢城, and ruled by the Joseon Dynasty (also transliterated as “Chosun”). The architectural heritage of the period remains in the form of five imperial palaces within the city … Continue reading
This gallery contains 13 photos.
And so at last we have left China, and made landing on Korean soil. For 500 years, the Korean Peninsula was a tributary state of Imperial China, first under the Ming Dynasty and then the Qing Dynasty. Korea itself wasn’t … Continue reading