Adventures in East Asia

National Folk Museum of Korea

The National Folk Museum is set within the grounds of the Gyeongbokgung - the Palace of Shining Happiness and entrance was free with the admission ticket to the palace. Made up of buildings comprising several stories and a pagoda to boot, the place felt completely at home amongst the palace architecture.


We visited the Gyeongbokgung on a pretty hot day and so the blissfully air-conditioned museum was a welcome diversion about halfway through our visit.


The National Folk Museum displayed how Korean commoners and nobles lived in traditional times with exhibits split into three areas: The History of Korean People, the Korean Way of Life and the Life Cycle of Koreans.

The History of Korean People

Exhibits were cleanly displayed within both brightly lit and muted interiors and this section included a historic timeline and items from various stages of Korean history.




The Korean Way of Life

Traditional architecture was combined with glass-fronted displays to depict the argriculture and daily life of Korean people in a village through the four seasons of a year.





The Life Cycle of Koreans

Milestones in the typical progression from birth to death of a Korean born into the noble class was exhibited in this hall. Scenes of marriage and memorial services were arranged along with interiors such as a herbal medicine shop and the depiction of a shamanistic healing ritual.


My favourite has to be this birthday celebration scene of a couple reaching their 60th years. The 60th birthday was especially important since it marked the completion of a full zodiacal cycle.


The birthday was celebrated with a large feast and merry-making, with the children preparing a special table laden with piles of colourful fruits and delicacies, often decorated with letters symbolising longevity.

More photos of the National Folk Museum on Flickr.

Visit the National Folk Museum website.

This entry posted in : Attractions. History. South Korea.

← Previous Entry Next Entry →