When I was young, I used to really hate history, never in my life I got a 'superior' score for history lesson but luckily I always passed the average score. I just did not understand what is the use of studying the deaths, old traditions, and ancient places that is not even firmly built anymore. What I believed was if someone memorizes everything in just a sec, means he will be a history professor's favorite student. That was why I found history boring. BUT time passed and I grew up and realized history is quite interesting. What makes it more fascinating is the historical places that basically has beautiful vintage building. One of the recommended old places where you can learn about Korea's past is Seodaemun Prison History Museum.
Seodaemun Prison was built in 1910 when Korea fell under Japanese rule at the end of Joseon Dynasty and in here, was where many Korean patriots were jailed and executed till the conclusion of World War II in 1945. Today, seven of the prison complex's original fifteen buildings are preserved as historical monuments, and Seodaemun Prison History Museum was also built on the actual grounds in remembrance of the history of struggle Koreans had went through to attain Korea's independence.
Here we are able to see not only an average cell but also look into the cells for solitary confinement. The basement of the main building was the area designated for interrogation and torture, so scenes depicting these have been recreated for visitors.
Photos of the prisoners
A mannequin Japanese guard oversees the cell block.
> Address : 251, Tongil-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 서울특별시 서대문구 통일로 251 (현저동)
> Direction :
[Subway] Dongnimmun Station (Seoul Subway Line 3), Exit 5. [Bus] - Get off at Independence Park Blue - 471, 701, 702, 703, 704, 720, 752 Green - 7019, 7021, 7023, 7025, 7712, 7737 Red - 9701, 9703, 9705, 9709, 9710, 9711, 9712
> Phone : +82-2-360-8586
> Operating Hours : Mar - Oct: 9:30 - 18:00 , Nov - Feb: 9:30 - 17:00
* closed : Jan 1st, The Day of Seollal (Lunar New Year's Day) & Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving Day), Mondays (If a holiday falls on a Monday, then the museum opens on that day, but closes the following day (Tuesday).
> Admission / Participation Fees :
Adults (over 19) 3,000 won / Group 2,400 won Youths (13 - 18) 1,500 won / Group 1,200 won Children (7 - 12) 1,000 won / Group 800 won * Group : 30 people or more
> Website : www.sscmc.or.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)
> Availability of guided tours:
Call the museum one week before your visit to give the docent enough time to prepare the schedule.
Languages: English and Japanese - Inquiries: +82-360-8586