Walking Along the Han River

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The Han River is the broad, broad river which flows through Seoul. Seoul originally became a prosperous city because boats could go on the river to the Yellow Sea all the way to China (this is currently not happening because the Han river enters the Yellow Sea right at the border between North and South Korea). Since I spent 2-3 weeks in Seoul, I had to go see the river myself.

I started my walk in Seoul's Yeongdeungpo District.

I started my walk in Seoul’s Yeongdeungpo District.

I started at Yeouido Park, on the south side of the river, and then walked across the Mapo Bridge which, surprise, took me to Seoul’s Mapo District.

That is Seoul's Mapo District, on the north side of the Han river.

That is Seoul’s Mapo District, on the north side of the Han river.

A photo taken on the Mapo Bridge, looking at the Mapo District

A photo taken on the Mapo Bridge, looking at the Mapo District

Walking across the bridge helped me appreciate just how wide the Han river is. It’s over a kilometer wide.

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That island in the center-left is a bird sanctuary

That island in the center-left is a bird sanctuary

Once I was in the Mapo District, I could get a better look at the Yeongdeungpo side of the river.

Looking at the National Assembly

Looking at the National Assembly

That building with the dome on top is the National Assembly, South Korea’s legislature. It’s famous for legislators using physical barricades, sledgehammers, and fire extinguishers against each other.

On the left is a door frame which is full of furniture, much of it damaged, which blocks passage.  On the right, a man is using a water hose on the barricaded door.  Behind him are two men with camera.  Behind them are lots of people in the corridor looking at what's going on.

I couldn’t resist including this photo of what goes on in the National Assembly, which comes from Agence France-Presse / Getty Images

Much of the Han river, at least the portion in Seoul, has pedestrian/bike paths running along it. Oh, and motorway structures.

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I can understand why most people bike it. It’s a bit slow an unstimulating at a pedestrian’s pace (though the people in Seoul might like the reduction in stimulation).

That's a big boat floating by the National Assembly

That’s a big boat floating by the National Assembly

I passed by an island in the river which is an official bird sanctuary. I eventually crossed another bridge, which brought me to Seonyudo Park which is on an island called, you guessed it, ‘Seonyudo’.

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If I remember correctly, Seonyudo used to be a waste treatment plant? Something to do with sanitation. Also, I think Joseon poets used to go there to compose poetry.

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I then got back on the bridge and returned to the Yeongdeungpo District (South) side of the river, and descended via elevator.

One last look at the National Assembly

One last look at the National Assembly

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5 Responses to Walking Along the Han River

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