Searching for something free to do in Seoul? I think one can’t miss activity is visiting the War Memorial of Korea. Even as someone who isn’t interested in war, I had a great time exploring the huge memorial. The grounds were once the headquarters of the Korean Infantry. It’s filled with history.
The grounds are huge, so I’m going to split this post into two parts. There is a large museum inside of the memorial filled with memorabilia from the Korean war and other wars like the Vietnam war and World War 2. I’ll focus on that here.
To go inside of the memorial is free, and at different times of the day you can even get a personal guide to take you through the museum. Student volunteers try to be available on the weekends and evenings to translate and explain the different items you can see.
There are tons of items to see from war time in Korea – from weapons to documents, you can find it here. It’s really interesting because the change that South Korea has went through since the war is huge. It’s really impressive how much they have modernized.
I always love seeing the dress and style from Korean history. The exhibits for the armor and officials clothing was my favorite part! They were so colorful and different.
Peace was a main theme throughout the memorial, thanking allies for help during the war and stressing that war caused so many casualties and is something to be avoided.
There were tons of weapons to see, dating back centuries! There was even a small area where you could watch a short film showing pictures of famous areas in South Korea years ago and how they currently look today. There were items from the prehistoric era to the Japanese colonial period, so you get a good look at how Korea progressed and changed throughout history.
There were a few ships located in the hallways for you to look into. Overall though, there were just so many artifacts to see. I love looking at old things and I really enjoyed seeing the more traditional style things from Korea, because you rarely see it in modern day life here. It’s a shame, because it’s a beautiful tradition!
How to get there: It’s really easy to get to from the subway. Take Line 6 (brown line) to Samgakji station and exit out of exit 1. Follow signs to the memorial. If you decided to take the bus, you can take the 110A, 110B, 740, or 421 bus and get off at the War Memorial of Korea stop.