Cheonmachong Tomb is an ancient royal tomb located among other tombs in Daereungwon Tomb Complex in Gyeongju City, Gyeongsangbuk-do.
It is one of the best attractions in the city due to its proximity and sense of awe and mystery of the findings.
Cheonmachong represents the ancient burial methods of Gyeongju royal people, which is quite particular during the Silla Dynasty.
As nobody (yet) has uncovered who was buried inside this mound tomb, its name is particularly coined from the flying white horse painting on a mudguard saddle flap.
Literally, ‘cheonmachong’ means ‘heavenly horse tomb’ (‘cheon’ for heaven, ‘ma’ for the horse, and ‘chong’ for the tomb).
I visited this historic tomb that evening I arrived in the city. I was surprised to have learned that it is very close to my hotel, which is also located two blocks from the Intercity Bus Terminal and Express Bus Terminal.
So, I paid an entrance fee (2,000 Won) and saw the inner tomb’s amazing findings…
Since it was my first time to be inside an ancient tomb (my mind was scrambling with the scenes of the movie ‘Mummy’), I felt a bit eerie but excited!
I passed through that square-shaped entrance and started investigating the items that met my eyes…
- A glass window protecting the wooden coffin. The coffin is heavily adorned with items which are supposed to be worn by the one buried in there.
The items include a golden crown, bracelets, antique pots, and dishes, among many other items.
According to the archaeologists, there are over 11 thousand items discovered inside the tomb.
Among such thousands of items is the cheonmado artwork – the white horse painting painted in the sides of the horse’s saddle.
Hope the photos here help you understand better what I am trying to describe.
Aside from the facilities mentioned, you can also continue walking around the area to enjoy exploring the other ancient tombs.
I like most the tombs’ almost perfect cone shapes. The pine trees and other flowering plants (and trees) also look well-maintained. I reckoned that they are most beautiful when the flowers bloom in the Spring season!
A pond with a sitting area is also located close to Cheonmachong Tomb. Prepare your phones or cameras for selfies, groupies, or any photography activity you want to do.
You can take a train or bus to Gyeongju City from Seoul or anywhere in the country. Alternatively, fly to Incheon Airport, Kimpo Airport and nearby airports in Gyeongsangbuk-do Province.
From Seoul Station: Take a train for Singyeongju Station. Then take a bus (Nos. 60, 61, 700) the get off at Geumseong Sageori Bus Stop. Use your smartphone to navigate easily.
Alternately, you can take a train for Gyeongju Train Station. From the station, take Bus No. 40 then get off at Cheonmachong Back Gate Bus Stop.
Take A Bus:
From Dong Seoul Bus Terminal, take an Intercity Bus for Gyeongju Intercity Bus Terminal. From the terminal, just walk away from the river’s direction. It takes around 12 minutes to get there.
Google or any navigation Apps proves very useful (Yes, I did use it ^^).
Also, you can take an intercity bus from Incheon Bus Terminal at Incheon Terminal subway station, Exit 3.
There are two main areas that you can get good choices of accommodation: Gyeongju City Center hotels and Bomun Tourist Complex hotels.
In Gyeongju City, where Cheonmachong Tomb is located, has various local hotels and guest houses. They are mostly not the international corporate hotels but they also offer great facilities and services.
It is in Bomun Tourist Complex area where you can stay at big and world famous hotels such as Kensington and Benikea hotels.
I stayed overnight in a nice and discount hotel close to Gyeongju Intercity Bus Station, which is also located nearby the city's attractions including Cheonmachong.
Please, let me know if you have questions regarding anything about that site.
Thanks and have a pleasant journey!