Landmarks

Cheonggyecheon (Stream)

청계천


About

Cheonggyecheon is an 11 km long modern stream that runs through downtown Seoul. Created as part of an urban renewal project, Cheonggyecheon is a restoration of the stream that was once there before during the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910). The stream was covered with an elevated highway after the Korean War (1950-1953), as part of the country's post-war economic development. Then in 2003, the elevated highway was removed to restore the stream to its present form today. The stream starts from Cheonggye Plaza, a popular cultural arts venue, and passes under a total of 22 bridges before flowing into the Hangang (River), with many attractions along its length.


“Spring” Tower: a Cheonggye Plaza landmark


The two main attractions of Cheonggye Plaza are the “Spring” Tower and the Candlelight Fountain. “Spring” is a sculpture by Swedish pop artist, Claes Oldenburg and serves as a striking backdrop for the wide variety of cultural events held at the plaza. The Candlelight Fountain is a 4 m long, two-layered waterfall that flows into the stream, and marks the start of Cheonggyecheon’s flowing current towards the Hangang. Candlelight Fountain is particularly stunning at night with its multi-colored illuminations.

  • Tower Spring
    ”Spring” Tower
  • Candlelight Fountain at night
    Candlelight Fountain at night
Gwangtonggyo
Gwangtonggyo was the largest of Cheonggyecheon's bridges during the Joseon Dynasty, but it was buried underground during the country's post-war economic development. Recently restored to its former glory, Gwangtonggyo has an old-fashioned charm which makes it one of the most photogenic places on the stream and very popular with tourists.
  • Gwangtonggyo 1
    Gwangtonggyo
  • Gwangtonggyo 2
    Gwangtonggyo
Tunnel Fountain

The Tunnel Fountain covers a 50 m stretch of the footpath that runs alongside the stream. It features 42 bank-mounted nozzles that shoot 16 m-long jets of water above visitors’ heads. The jets of water arch overhead into the stream to form a delightful water tunnel through which visitors can walk and feel the simple pleasure a light refreshing mist against their faces. Gwangtonggyo was the largest of Cheonggyecheon's bridges during the Joseon Dynasty, but it was buried underground during the country's post-war economic development. Recently restored to its former glory, Gwangtonggyo has an old-fashioned charm which makes it one of the most photogenic places on the stream and very popular with tourists.


Beodeul Wetland


Beodeul Wetland 1▶ Beodeul Wetland


Beodeul Wetland is a place of special ecological value as a bird sanctuary (it is frequently visited by migrating birds) and because of the wealth of aquatic plants that grow there. Nearby stands Dumuldari, a bridge whose name means “the bridge where two currents converge." It marks the confluence of the Cheonggyecheon and Jungnangcheon tributaries as they flow towards the Hangang. The merging of the two currents resembles interlocked fingers and has a fairytale quality which led UNICEF to designate Dumuldari as a children’s bridge.
  • Beodeul Wetland 2
    Beodeul Wetland
  • Dumuldari
Cheonggyecheon Museum

Cheonggyecheon’s turbulent history is on display at the Cheonggyecheon Museum which opened in September 2005. The museum offers visitors the chance to learn about the many changes the stream has seen, including being buried underground and being restored. The story is told with the help of a scale-model and period photographs. Admission is free.


Cheonggye 8 Views

Gwangtonggyo sign▶ Gwangtonggyo


Of Cheonggyecheon’s many attractions, the eight most beautiful are officially recognized as the “Cheonggye 8 Views”. These must-see locations along the stream include the Cheonggye Plaza, Gwangtonggyo (Bridge), the Banchado of King Jeongjo (Tile Painting), the Fashion Square (Wall of Culture), the Historic Laundry Site, the Wall of Hope, the Old Expressway Ruins/Tunnel Fountain, and the Beodeul Wetland.
  • Banchado of King Jeongjo
    Banchado of King Jeongjo

  • Wall of Culture under Ogansugyo
    Wall of Culture under Ogansugyo (Bridge)

  • Wall of Saekdong
    Wall of Saekdong, a tiled mural by Gyuhwan Lee

  • Historic laundry site
    Historic laundry site
Guided tours along the stream are available in Korean, English and Japanese. Visitors are recommended to plan their trip in advance and to learn about Cheonggyecheon by visiting the Cheonggyecheon Museum or website.

* Tour Route 1 (2.9 km, 3 hours): Cheonggye Plaza → Gwangtonggyo (Restored Bridge) → Samilgyo (Jongno, Insa-dong) → Supyogyo → Saebyeokdari (KwangJang and Bangsan Market) → Ogansugyo (Dongdaemun Fashion Town)
* Tour Route 2 (2.6 km, 2.5 hours): Cheonggyecheon Museum → Gosanjagyo → Dumuldari → Malgeunnaedari → Ogansugyo (Dongdaemun Fashion Town)

  • Gwanggyo Gallery
    Gwanggyo Gallery

  • Sculptural art
    Sculptural art by one of the artists of the Cheonggye Creative Studio

  • Footbridge
    Footbridge

  • Waterfall and stepping-stones
    Waterfall and stepping-stones

  • Gosa Fountain near Pyounghwa Clothing Market
    Gosa Fountain near Pyounghwa Clothing Market

  • Photo of the original Cheonggyecheon
    Photo of the original Cheonggyecheon
[2010-12-03 17:48 Input / 2014-10-21 12:00 Modify]