Tuesday, August 2, 2016

2016 July: South Korea: Gyeongju: Seokguram Grotto, Silla Arts and Science Museum

Seokguram, located on Tohamsan Mountain, is accessible by bus from Bulguksa Temple.  I've seen this sculpture initially from watching Arirang.  














Upon arrival, you need to pay the fees and prepare for a 10 minutes (.6km) walk on the mountain side.  (I was rushing on my way back to avoid walking on the rain on this road to avoid possible rocks or winds passing by the tall tree branches). 

Seokguram Grotto
873-243, Bulguk-ro, Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
경상북도 경주시 불국로 873-243 (진현동)
www.sukgulam.org
http://jikimi.cha.go.kr/english
Admission: 4,000 won (Adult)



The temple guide is too friendly to encourage me to walk on the stairs and after more than 50 steps, I'll be able to see the temple.   




While inside, it was too tempting to take a photo, but there are signs that it is not allowed.  So instead, I have decided I really need to go to the Science Museum to know more about the structure.  But inside, you'll see this statue covered by glass and enclosed by air-conditioning.


Seokguram, located on Tohamsan Mountain, is the representative stone temple of Korea. The official name of Seokguram, National Treasure No. 24, is Seokguram Seokgul. Designated as a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1995, it is an artificial stone temple made of granite. The construction was started by Kim Dae-Seong (700-774) in 751 during the reign of King Gyeong-Deok (742-765) of the Silla Kingdom (57 BC - AD 935) and it was finished twenty-four years later in 774, during the reign of King Hye-Gong (765-780). [visitkorea.or.kr]


The white lanterns and for the souls while the colorful lanterns are for the wishes and prayers of the locals.

Check-out the return schedule of Bus 12, back to Bulguksa bus stop.





Drop-off at Gyeongju Folk Craft Village, and take a 10 minutes walk to the museum.


Silla Arts and Science Museum (신라역사과학관)

33, Hadonggongyechon-gil Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
경상북도 경주시 하동공예촌길 33 (하동)
Admission: Adults 3,000 won


Coming from a science high school, it looks like it still mesmerizes me to visit Science Museums and see stars and sundials. 











Old photos during the original construction and re-construction after Japanese invasion. 



They even explain and showed the underground water system used in the grotto, given that it is on the mountain top.