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Known as ‘the museum without walls’, Gyeongju (경주) has more tombs, temples, rock carvings, pagodas, Buddhist statuary and palace ruins than any other place in South Korea. It's a lovely city, stuffed to the gills with history.

Most visitors touring the city center are taken aback by the distinctive, low-lying urban centre sculpted by astonishing and substantial round grassy tombs – called tumuli – as well as traditional architecture, with colorful hip roofs set against a canvas of green rolling mountains.

Two of Gyeongju’s not-to-be-missed sites – Bulguk-sa and Seokguram – are in the outlying districts, within reach of public transport. Gyeongju and its surrounding districts covers a vast area – some 511 sq mi (1323 sq km) – so you should plan on several days' stay if you want to visit some of the lesser-known places.

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Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Gyeongju.


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