Korea Travel Blog Seoul Capital Area

Changsindong: A village under the quarry cliff

Changsindong, a village under the quarry cliff. Here is simply called ‘under the stone mountain’, literally refer to "anywhere under the stone Mountain."

Changsindong: A village under the quarry cliff
Changsindong: A village under the quarry cliff

a village under the quarry cliff.

Here is simply called ‘under the stone mountain’, literally refer to “anywhere under the stone Mountain.”

Changsindong: A village under the quarry cliff
Changsindong: A village under the quarry cliff

The villagers simply called ‘under the stone mountain’, literally refer to “anywhere under the stone Mountain.”

It was more than interesting to find Changshin-dong with its back facing the east fortress of Seoul, its inner shady and wrinkled neighborhood, and the neighborhood where each of them is living under the sheer granite cliff.

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The way to get the hidden village
under the ‘Stone Mountain’


Changshin-dong, a village of ordinary people, is complicated and busy. With small sewing factories and houses together, motorcycles go there as often as people. Due to the sprawling buildings along the road, the rugged terrain is deeper and more shady.

From the old winding alleys and still active traditional markets, houses and factories that divide large and small land into several parts, and now the 25 Naksan Civic Apartments built on the mountain, the complex traces of time make it difficult for anyone to guess where they stand.

There are two main ways to get to the ‘Under the Stone Mountain’, which is located deep inside Changshin-dong.

One is the route from the entrance of Changshin Market near Exit 3 of Dongdaemun Station along the market path.

There are many interesting things to pass through in Changshin Market, such as a rural marketplace, so you need to focus to get to the stone village.

For example, the famous Nepalese cuisine restaurant ‘Everest’ and the 80-year-old Korean sauna ‘Dongho HanJeongwon’ are located at the entrance, along the middle are spicy Jokbal(pig’s feet) restaurants, and at the end are Korean Blood Sausage Soup restaurants, which smells delicious.

When the market is over and you continue to walk to the direction you walked, you’ll see a ‘Yukgeori street’ where all the houses and roads seem to be cornered. Just along the road stretching from this distance to 3 o’clock, you will find the ‘under the stone mountain’ at the end.

Another way is to go up Changshin-gil. Exit from Dongdaemun Station Exit 1 and you will see Changsin Photo studio. Facing the photo studio and standing on the right, Changshin-gil is filled with shops on the three-story high buildings.

A little further up from here, you will find a police station standing by a long and high tree and on the side, you will see a three-way street centered around a shop.

From here, right along the alley between the motorcycle and the bike,
At some point, you’ll meet a landscape of giant stone cliffs surrounded by two- and three-story buildings. Right there, 595 Changshin-dong, just below the stone mountain.

Quarry where stone was dug for the Japanese Government-General of Korea.


The quarry site appears to have been occupied by people in the mid-60s. Afterwards, in the 70’s through the exploration, the legalization project was carried out, and illegal buildings were reinforced with concrete or brick and was granted by Government.

In other words, the land and buildings were purchased from the state or city.

From 1910 to the late 1920s, large buildings that lay the foundation of the colonial city of Seoul begin to be built one after the other. Most of them are stone structures built in the Western style of architecture, which we know very well.

Joseon Bank(Bank of Korea, 1912), Gyeongseong Station(Former Seoul Station, 1925), Gyeongseong Office (Seoul City Hall, 1926) and the Japanese Government-General of Korea, the most iconic building, was completed after 10 years of construction in 1926.

With its optimal location just outside Dongdaemun, Dolsan Mountain in Changshin-dong was transformed into a quarry in direct operation of the Gyeongseongbu Ministry in 1924 and becomes a place like a chaos where blasts and stone quarries take place every day.

The stones from there were transported to the grounds of Gyeongbokgung Palace to form a part of the magnificent japanese Government-General of Korea.

After the liberation, some quarry is still used. Since the 1960s, people have been living in the villages and people sometimes reported its existence in newspapers with stories about a rock falling off a cliff and killing or injuring a person.

Scenery of History, Quarry observatory


Changsin-Sungin Quarry Observatory in Changsin-dong, the living place of sewer designated as the No. 1 Urban Regeneration Business District in Seoul.

It is a great thing that the area, which was almost transformed into an apartment-densed area after being selected as a New Town area, is left with the modern history of Seoul intact according to the modern history of Seoul.

On the rooftop of the observation deck on the 3rd floor, you can see Changsin-dong, where the quarry of granite needed for the construction was built while the Western-style building was built during the Japanese colonial period. The wide field of view wows you.

The second floor where you meet one floor from the roof is designed with glass and you can enjoy the scenery of the quarry in a pleasant atmosphere regardless of the season.

On one side, you can enjoy a cup of coffee while looking down at the heart of Seoul.

Sanmaru playground, a huge play area on a ridge


On the way down from the quarry observatory, there is a yellow structure that would not have known what the purpose was if it had not been for the sign “Sanmaru Playground.”

Built as part of an urban regeneration program at an old children’s park that had been left unused, it is a complex cultural space with creative play spaces for children, libraries and even multi-purpose halls.

Opposite the thimble-shaped building, there is an dirt wall playground and a sand playground where children can fully enjoy the touch of sand. It is a space that provides nature and adventure for children living in the heart of Seoul without touching soil.

Seoul’s Montmartre Hill, Naksan Park


If you keep going the road after quarry observatory. You will see the Naksan Park mid-entrance. From here, you can go up to the north or come down to South, Dongdaemun Shopping area.

It is also known as a shooting spot for people who want to capture the cool views of downtown Seoul and the local village scenery under Naksan, and is also used as a filming location for Korean drama and Movie.

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