There are numerous observatories at the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea, Odusan Unification Observatory (오두산 통일전망대) is one of them. It has opened its doors to the public for nearly 25 years. The observatory has about 2-kilometer distance from the grounds of North Korea.
On the fourth day of our family trip, Danny and I brought them to Gyeongbokgung or Gyeongbok Palace (경복궁), the biggest among 5 of the palaces in Seoul. In English, Gyeongbokgung (Hanja: 景福宮) means The Palace of Shining Happiness. Another name they call it is The Northern Palace due to its locality. Moreover, it is one of the most visited tourist spots in the capital. A great place to strengthen those hamstrings, too.
It was built in 1395 during the Joseon dynasty and had been destroyed by fire, but King Gojong was able to restore it during his reign. I won’t elaborate more of its history because it’s quite long, repetitive and probably boring to some. To learn more about the palace, please visit their website. Link is at the bottom part of this post.
I was asked to contribute regarding South Korea. My essay, originally in English, is reprinted below. While the essay admits Japan’s many needed changes on this issue – Yasukuni, historical memorialization, etc. – that stuff was more for the contributor on Japan. I was to focus on the South Korean side.
August 15 is one of the most meaningful days to Koreans. It is Gwangbokjeol, the National Liberation Day of Korea . You can see many Korean national flags “Taegeukgi” hung in the street or on the windows of the houses.
We can easily forget as foreigners living in Korea that we are living in a forcibly divided country still at war. Join the ISC in a reunification tour to explore regions of significance to the inter-Korean conflict. You can sign up at http://bit.ly/1eTvmEL
The challenge to South Korea this picture represents is my argument for where South Korea’s extraordinary national hang-up about Japan comes from.
Last month, I wrote about ‘anti-Japanism’ in South Korea. I tried to make an argument for why I thought it went beyond just what Japan did in the colonial period. Remember that North Korea does not villainize Japan the way South Korea does.