Saturday, October 23, 2010

Changdeok Palace and the Secret Garden

Last weekend I went to the Changdeok Palace which was the "Queen's Palace". Inside this palace are the Secret Gardens which were just inaugurated into UNESCO World Heritage Sites. This meaning that now instead of being able to wander at ones' convenience through the beautiful landscape you have to be accompanied on a tour that costs extra money and attracts clusters of annoying tourists. (I say that like I have been here longer then two months.) It was an extremely beautiful place besides the awkward group of people I got stuck with (tour groups are awkward in general I think) and some of the sites have only been open to the public for five years. Considering the gardens have been forbidden to anyone not an immediate member of the Korean Royal Family that has been in existence for almost five hundred years, five years is infant hood. Here are some pictures of the garden and the palace. 

Potted Rocks! I loved these! 
The archway said "eternal youth" and it is said that anyone who walks under it will never grow old.  Im currently trying out that theory. 

In the center are two dragons fighting.  We weren't allowed inside this pagoda so I wasn't able to get a better picture unfortunately. 
On the rock face is an inscription about something that I am sure is wonderful but have no idea what wonderful thing is being talked about.  Koreans believe that fountains are adverse to the laws of nature because of the way that water is pushed up into the air fighting gravity, so the only sounds of water you will here in a Korean garden is that of the waterfall. 

Cool Root
Sweet hang out spot

750 year old tree!! Its top got taken off in the last typhoon.  Poor tree, getting disrespected by a storm. Although we haven't found out how to age storms so we don't really know which one was older. Either way I'm sure my 24 years of age is a joke to both the tree and the storm. 

Palace entrance
Korean Romeo and Juliet balcony
 Tiny door! 

Another tiny door! 

1 comment:

  1. It's hard to fully appreciate the delicacy of the architecture because it is so intricate!Can you imagine the blueprints? Just the roofs are amazing. Can you imagine being there in a calm snowfall? How nice would that be? What a beautiful place. No.wait! It's a beautiful palace.