A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

While Jongmyo Shrine is not one of the Five Grand Palaces of Seoul, it was still a very important site of the Joseon Dynasty. It serves as a shrine for deceased members of royalty.  Jongmyo is located not far from Changdeokgung Palace. Like the many of the palaces, Jongmyo Shrine is situated in a park-like area with lots of trees.

Jongmyo Shrine is in central Seoul, not far from Jongno-3-ga subway station. This area has a lot of street food. It was here that I fell in love with these fried egg-pancake combo things. I didn’t know what they were called at the time, but I’ve since learned that this Korean Egg Bread is called gyeran-bbang, and it is delicious.

jongno food stands 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

korean street food egg pancake 700x933 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

Usually, only guided tours can access Jongmyo Shrine. However, thanks to it being the last Wednesday of the month, access was free for a Culture Day. This is also the case on Saturdays. While it was nice to be able to enter without having a reservation, you would get additional background from a guided tour, so I recommend planning ahead.

jongmyo shrine wednesday cultural day 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

Due to its important cultural history, Jongmyo Shrine is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Jongmyo has been designated as such due to its preservation as the oldest royal Confucian shrine. While royalty once visited the shrine, today it is still used for cultural events. Several times a year, local groups perform rituals with songs & dancing.

jongmyo shrine unesco sign 700x933 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

A lovely wooded park surrounds Jongmyo Shrine. Beware of the signs marking the stone pathway for the spirits, as these areas should be avoided in order to respect this religious monument.

jongmyo shrine stone pathway spirits 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

It was a cool, cloudy day, so it wasn’t great for photos. It was still nice, as it was quiet.

jongmyo shrine entrance 700x933 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

jongmyo shrine park 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

jongmyo shrine unesco world heritage site 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

jongmyo shrine paths 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

jongmyo shrine inside 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

jongmyo shrine buildings 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

The focal point of Jongmyo Shrine is the long royal ancestral hall. At its creation in the 14th century, this was one of the longest buildings in Asia. While this original building from 1394, the current construction dates from 1601, making it one of the few key buildings in central Seoul that is not a recent reconstruction.

jongmyo shrine 700x264 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

jongmyo shrine seoul 700x525 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea

I had hoped to continue north directly to Changdeokgung Palace, which is just across the road, but there is no exit here. As a result, you have to double back to the entrance, then walk around the outside, through the surrounding neighborhood.

Jongmyo Shrine is a nice companion stop if you are visiting the Five Grand Palaces of Seoul, or if you’re looking for a quiet place to reflect away from the bustle of central Seoul.

Inspired to travel? Start making your plans now!
All Travel TripAdvisorimage 5616389 12205838 1461262625000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | Expediaimage 5616389 11916097 1452549382000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | Pricelinei.ashx?foid=1061665 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | Travelocityi.ashx?foid=1061665 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea
Flights Airfarewatchdogimage 5616389 12335034 1446048188000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | BookingBuddyimage 5616389 11295046 1454342930000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | Cheapflights.comimage 5616389 10807971 1440511376000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea
Hotels Hotels.comimage 5616389 10429755 1461777394000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | Booking.comi.ashx?foid=1061665 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | Trivagoimage 5616389 11662161 1427705140000 - A visit to Jongmyo Shrine in Seoul, South Korea | AirBnb

Like this article? Subscribe to my weekly e-mail & never miss anything!

Also, follow me on social media to get the latest updates:

  • Disclaimer: This site contains partner links that I may be compensated for. Please check out my advertising & privacy policy for full details, & thank you for supporting the site!




    Leave a Reply