It’s hard to choose which of Seoul’s ancient grand palaces to visit first. Gyeongbokgung, Palace of Shining Happiness, is a great place to start.
Built by the founder of the Joseon Dynasty, King Taejo, in the 1500s it was burnt to the ground when the Japanese invaded later in that century. It wasn’t until 300 years later that the palace was rebuilt by the father of King Gojong. No royalty lives here today and the palace is open to the public every day except Tuesday.
If you time it right you can catch the changing of the guards where soldiers decked out in Josen-era garb put on a regal procession.
Some of the highlights of the sprawling complex include Geunjeongjeon, the main palace pavillion, the Gyeonghoeru pavillion and the Royal gardens.
Pictured above from top to bottom: Changing of the Guards, Geunjeongjeon, Gyeonghoeru, Royal Gardens