I have visited the Jinnamgwan Hall site coming directly from my hotel on my second day in Yeosu City. Jinnamgwan Hall was top on my list during this first-ever visit to this famous place.
My excitement to fully explore the site was dampened when I learned that Korea's most massive wooden structure was under renovation.
At least, I was begging deep inside me and the heavens that I could see even just a glimpse of one of Hall's giant pillars!
The taxi driver kindly informed me that we arrived at the Jinnamgwan Hall site. I told him that the place was under renovation. He didn't know this was happening!
Here I got off, still excited to explore whatever is available. I approached the cleaning 'ajumma' (married woman) and asked if the Hall is actually not accessible. Her answer confirmed my disappointment:
"No, it is not accessible yet, and we don't really know when it will be ready for the public to see."
I had no choice but to accept this fact calmly. I am telling myself that maybe it will be much better when I come back next time.
So, I started looking around and taking photos.
The ajumma offered that I could see and learn more about the Hall from the museum. It was already in my mind, and a museum is always an excellent source for my travels. They area exciting and the best place for historical erudition.
While exploring (and somewhat enjoying as well) the old photos of Jinnamgwan, examining the weapons used during the war, and taking pictures, I met the curator.
I asked, once again, the curator, if there's any chance at all for me to sneak and peek inside the Hall. Unfortunately, it is not allowed yet! Strictly forbidden for public view.
To comfort me a bit, she tried explaining the items inside and even informed me that there are other national treasures nearby the site.
She pointed out an old bridge near the museum that links to the pavilion where steles are being erected to honor Admiral Yi Sun-Shin's battle wins. I got excited and feeling much better! (See my article here)
Jinnamgwan Hall, designated as National Treasure No. 304 by the Korean government, was the naval base of Jeolla Province during the Joseon Dynasty Period.
Admiral Yi Sun-sin established this building and used it as his headquarters during his fight against the Japanese invaders.
Jinnamgwan Hall had a watchtower that was used by the soldiers to keep watching the movement of the invaders.
In 1597, during the second Japanese invasion in the area, the original building was burned down.
In 1599, Admiral Yi Si-Eon built a large official residence to accommodate guests with its 75 rooms right on top of the destroyed Hall. The construction began when the Imjin War ended in 1598.
Near the Hall, one can see the famous Yeosu Stone Statue, which is designated as Tangible Cultural Asset of Jeollanamdo No.33.
Jinnamgwan Hall is National Treasure No. 304, as designated on April 17, 2001, by the Korean government.
The whole site where Jinnamgwan Hall sits is accessible to the public all-year-round. But since the Hall is under renovation and strict watch by the culture conservation officials, it is not accessible until further notice.
However, other structures and facilities are available anytime from 9 AM up to 5 or 6 PM daily.
The parking area is available, and it is for free.
Restrooms for guests are available mainly at the small museum.
English, Chinese, and Japanese translators are available if requested in advance or before your visit.
You can get to Yeosu from Seoul or Gwangju City.
From Seoul, take the express bus from Seoul Bus Terminal for Yeosu City. Or, take a train for Yeosu Expo Station from Yongsan Station in Seoul
From Gwanju City, head to U-Square (Gwangju Bus Terminal) and take either a one-stop or direct express bus for Yeosu Intercity Bus Terminal.
Cross the Yeosu Intercity Bus Terminal and you can take any of the buses for Jinnamgwan Bus Stop...
Bus 24, 35, 73, 84, 88 or 102 and get off at Jinnamgwan Hall.
You can see more exciting and relaxing sites and places in Yeosu. I can guarantee that, based on my short visit (two days only!).
Nearby, by bus, taxi, or on foot, you can see the following places...
I promise that I will update this page when Jinnamgwan Hall is back in business. Excited to see it sometime next year (2021).
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Have safe travels, and enjoy it!
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