The original purpose of the Seoul City Wall was to mark the city's boundaries and defend against outside intrusions during the Joseon Dynasty.
The original purpose of the Seoul City Wall was to mark the city’s boundaries and defend against outside intrusions during the Joseon Dynasty.
The stone walls that used to protect the land and the people of Hanyang, the capital of the Joseon Dynasty. For descendants of Joseon in the 21st century, it became a popular place to enjoy history and take a walk in the cityscape.
Walking slowly down the old fortress road surrounding Seoul, it is also popular with foreigners as it offers a quick glimpse of Seoul’s nature and urban landscape. It was also listed on the UNESCO World Heritage in 2012 due to its high historical value.
The original purpose of the Seoul City Wall was to mark the city’s boundaries and defend against outside intrusions during the Joseon Dynasty. After building along the ridges of Mount Bukak, Naksan, Namsan and Inwang, which surround the central part of Seoul, the renovation was carried out several times.
The average height of the city fortress is about 5 to 8 meters and its total length is about 18.6 kilometers, and it is responsible for the city’s functions for as many as 514 years from 1396 to 1910, boasting the longest history of the city fortress around the world.
Seoul City Wall has four big gates and four small gates. Heunginjimun Gate, Donuimun Gate, which are milestones in Dongdaemun Shopping District, Sungnyemun Gate at the entrance of Namdaemun Market, and Sukjeongmun Gate in Samcheong-dong, are four Big gates. Hyehwa Gate, Sommun Gate, Gwanghuimun Gate and Changmun Gate are four small gates.
Seventy percent of the old road has been refurbished and prepare a total of six walking courses, with the most people visiting in the spring and autumn when cherry blossoms are in full bloom.
Seoul City Wall’s Old Function
The function of Seoul City Wall is to first mark the city’s boundaries and prevent outside intrusions.
The opening and closing hours of the gate were announced by striking the boshingjong bell in Jongro every dawn and evening, which dominated the living rhythm of the people in the city.
Upon arriving at Hanyang for a test in the past, the scholars traveled around the city to pray for their approval, and the people frequently climbed the City Wall and enjoyed the scenery of nature.