Doksanseong is a mountain fortress which is also called Dokseongsanseong. In 1593, the 26th year of King Seonjo of Chosun Dynasty, General Gwon Yul stationed twenty thousand soldiers from Jeolla-do, led a sweeping victory against the Japanese invasion of Korea. The general saved the country within the fortress by cutting of the intrusion of enemies. When Doksanseong was constructed is not certain. It is known to have been built in the Baekje Dynasty, and had long been a strategic fortress during the Unified Silla Dynasty and Goryo Dynasty. This historical fortress was reconstructed in 1594, the 27th year of King Seonjo, and his deputy Eunseong Byeon modified it in 1602 after the Japanese invasion. The fortress was repaired in 1792 and again in 1796. It is 3,240 meters round and has four gates. Although the fortress had a disadvantage, the shortage of water, it is famous for its legendary battle called “Semadae Fight.” In this battle of life and death, General Gwon Yul used a wise strategy, with which he led the horse and pretended to wash it with rice. This performance made the Japanese think there were abundant food and water in the fortress. As a result, the Japanese military withdrew.
Yungneung is a joint tomb of Crown Prince Sado (1735-1762) and his wife, Hyegyeonggung, the Lady Hong (1735-1815). After his enthronement, King Jeongjo, a son of Sado raised the posthumous title of his father to Crown Prince Jangheon. In 1899, Jangheon was posthumously honored as Emperor Eui and his wife as Empress Eui. The tomb, originally named Yeonguwon, was first located in the Baebong Mountain in Yangju-si, Gyeonggi-do but King Jeongjo moved it to its current place in the Hwasan Mountain in Suwon and changed the tomb’s name to Hyeonnyungwon. This joint tomb is surrounded by retaining stones carved with peony and lotus patterns. A new style was introduced by using both eight-sided stone lanterns from the earlier Chosun period and four-sided ones from the reign of King Sukjong and King Yeongjo, which became the standard style for Geolleung and Yeneung, a royal tomb of the 25th King of Chosun Dynasty. Stone statues in Yungneung contain a more realistic depiction and raise their heads, unlike the previous sculptures with their head deeply bowing down to the chest. The stone image of civil officials depicted them wearing a gold crown on their heads, which influenced the tomb style from the 19th century onwards. King Jeongjo made great efforts to create a new style constructing Hyeonnyungwon. Geolleung is a joint tomb of the 22nd King Jeongjo (1752-1800) of Chosun Dynasty and his wife Queen Hyoui (1753-1821). King Jeongjo was known to be devoted to serve his parents. As a king, he opened the offices to the talented intellectuals and achieved the golden age of Korean culture in the late period of Chosun Dynasty. Geolleung was initially located on the eastern hill of the Hyeonnyungwon. After Queen Hyoui passed away, the tomb was moved to the west side to have him buried together with Queen Hyoui, because the original location was not satisfactory in accordance with the pungsu (geomancy) principle. This tomb features two burial chambers and a stone banister encircling the mound. Except for these, it follows the style of Yungneung; it has only one Honyuseok, a stone table in front of a tomb on which spirits can play and both four- and eight-sided stone lanterns are used just like in Yungneung. Standing stone statues of civil servants and military officials became the standard for 19th century royal tombs.
Buddhist temple Yongjusa was originally named Galyangsa which was constructed in the 16th year of King Munseong’s reign, Silla Kingdom (854) and earned a reputation for its green beauty and religious purity. It was destroyed by fire during the second Manchu invasion of 1636 but was rebuilt by the 22nd King Jeongjo (1752-1800) of Chosun Dynasty. King Jeonjo intended it to be a Buddhist temple for nobles and the Royal House as he moved his father Crown Prince Sado’s tomb to Mt. Hwasan. By building this temple, King Jeongjo comforted the wandering ghost of his father, who was locked in a large rice chest by the viceroy and starved to death in eight days. Jeongjo was so moved by a Buddhist sermon on the Scripture in Honor of Parental Love by the monk Bogyeong that he decided to construct a Buddhist temple to console his father’s sprit. Thus, he moved his father’s tomb, originally located in Mt. Baebong, Yangju-si to Mt. Hwasan, known as the most blessed land, and named it Hyeonnyungwon (later renamed as Yungneung). The king appointed the monk Bogyeong as Paldodohwaju, an official for raising contributions from monks nationwide, and designated Yongjusa as the royal tomb temple to protect the tomb of ill-fated Crown Prince Sado and pray for the repose of his father’s soul. The fact that Yongjusa was rebuilt during Chosun Dynasty has a great historical significance in that Buddhism was politically suppressed during the dynasty. The temple’s name means “dragon jewel temple.” On the night of the completion day, King Jeongjo dreamed of a dragon ascending to heaven with the magic jewel of the cintamani in its mouth. Yongjusa became a temple where the mercy of Buddha became harmonized with filial devotion. As one of five temples authorized to supervise the lives of Buddhist monks and nuns, it regulated sangha practice, and also managed Buddhist temples nationwide through Pallodoseungwon, an agency for Buddhist temple inspection.
It was opened on May 4, 2006 by Kyonggi Province starting to construct since 2000. It displays about 425,000 plants of 1,600 species. It consists of 19 gardens with its respective themes including a forest exhibit hall, a rest area, a grass plaza, and an observatory with the theme "the meeting of water, trees, and humans." Insects and birds can be observed as well. Water-loving plants are distinctive features of this place having a wetland eco-park and a botanical garden for aquatic plants and moist-loving plants. As suggested in its name, the arboretum has become "the place of clean water". You can enjoy seeing gardens with climbing plants, fruit trees, and various kinds of pine trees. Beside outdoor facilities, the arboretum has indoor watching facilities such as an insect eco-park with butterflies, stag beetles, and beetles, ornamental bird garden with chickens, pheasants, and peacocks, and a warm-temperate fern botanical garden.
Hwaseong Haenggung, a temporary palace, is an important cultural property that shows the changes in politics, military, society and culture in the late Chosun Dynasty. Through the excavation and restoration project, this cultural asset was restored to sustain its historical and academic values. In addition, Hwaseong Haenggung has served as a historical space where King Jeongjo achieved political reformation and politics for the people, based on Silhak, practical learning; a symbolic place of his devotion to parents in which the King held the party for this mother’s 60th birthday, Princess Hong of Hyegyeonggung; and the key place of Hwaseong, designated as UNESCO’s World Cultural Heritage.