Goryeogungji Palace

Top choice in Gyeonggi-do & Incheon

The partially restored remains of a small palace, dating back to the Goryeo dynasty (918–1392), sit on a hillside in Ganghwa-eup. The palace was completed around 1234, a few years after King Gojong moved his capital to Ganghwado to better resist Mongol invasion.

Directly down the hill from the palace is the Ganghwa Anglican Church (c 1900), notable in that it is designed like a traditional Korean temple. Follow the alleyways down to the Yongheunggung Royal Residence, where King Cheoljong lived in the 19th century.

The palace and town were once encircled by a 7km fortress wall, snaking over the surrounding hilltops much like the one in Seoul. Destroyed in 1866 by French troops who invaded Korea in response to the execution of nine French Catholic missionaries, it has since been partially rebuilt, and three major gates have been renovated.

The palace is a 15-minute walk from the bus terminal.