Chang Seung-won, Department of Polymer Nano Science & Technology
When I ask people if they know anything about Hwaseong, they will always reply with the same question, “Which Hwaseong?” The word Hwaseong has three meanings in Korean: the planet Mars, Hwaseong City, and the fortress located in Suwon City. The ‘Hwaseong’ I am focusing on is the latter, the fortress, and as an honorable citizen of Suwon City, I will review the Hwaseong Haenggung Palace and the Suwon Hwaseong Museum.
Starting with Hwaseong Haenggung, Hwaseong Haenggung is a palace inside the Hwaseong fortress built by King Jeongjo of the Joseon Dynasty. King Jeongjo built the Hwaseong Fortress because of its geographical advantage to China and used the palace as a place to stay while trying to make Suwon the capital of Korea. Also, the remains of Prince Sado is housed here. When I went to the palace, the architecture was astonishing and there were a lot of events made for all ages. There were various traditional games to experience and stamp tours made especially for children. Also, traditional performances like soldiers performing military exercises. After exploring the palace, I went to the Suwon Hwaseong Museum.
At the Suwon Hwaseong Museum, I got to know many interesting facts about the Hwaseong. The fortress has the merits of both the eastern and western construction methods and has outstanding capabilities of defense. Also, Hwaseong was listed as a WCHby UNESCO in 2007. Now going on to the exhibition, the museum consists of two floors. On the first floor, there are various exhibition halls, a café, and an experience room for children. On the second floor, we can learnabout all the stuff related to Hwaseong. The construction process, defense systems, portraits of people, various documents and much more are explained thoroughly. Also, the exhibition doesn’t end inside because if you go outside, you can see the replicas of the scientific construction cranes like Nongno and the famous Goejunggi.
Before I finish this review, I will give some tips if you are planning to tour Hwaseong this year. For the whole 2019, if you are a Kakao Talk Plus Friend of Suwon City, most of the entrance fees to the museums are exempt. Your Plus Friended phone is all you need to enter the museum. Also, discounts forsoccer games, art museums, and performances are given to Plus Friends.