Thursday 11/12/15 (Wednesday 11/11/15 US time)
One of the best things about visiting my aunt and uncle who lives in the rural parts of Korea is getting to see all of the historic sites this country has to offer! It’s crazy and unimaginable. The temples, I mean. We drive through and up several mountains. And hike up another mountain to get to the temple.
Buddhism is very popular in Korea. Hence, the reason for so many temples. The religion entered the kingdom of Silla during the 5th century. Most of the temples are purposely located high in the mountains where it’s quiet and safe. More importantly, it was to protect important documents and to hide during the Japanese invasion in the 16th century.
Today we visited 불국사 (Bulguksa) which is located on mount Toham. This temple is very old – more than thousand years old! It’s a very popular place to visit – classified as Historic and Scenic Site No. 1 by the South Korean government. Bulguksa was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List together with the Seokguram Grotto, which lies four kilometers to the east.
Here are some of the pictures from today.
It’s amazing to me how people found themselves up high in the mountains but also to build something so remarkable as these temples by hand!