• Busan

    Geumsansa Temple – 금산사 (Gijang-gun, Busan)

    Temple History Geumsansa Temple is located in Gijang-gun, Busan, and it belongs to the Jogye-jong Order. The temple was first established in October, 1990 by the monk Geumsan; and hence, where the temple gets its name. In January, 2004, the temple added a large Reclining Buddha image inside the main hall. Also, and it’s unclear of the connection between the two, but the Sanshin-do (Mountain Spirit Mural) of Geumsansa Temple is Busan Cultural Heritage Property #85 as of 2015. The painting of Sanshin dates back to 1856. And it’s a wonderful example of a mid-19th century shaman painting. It’s unclear of the paintings present location. Temple Layout You first approach…

  • Gyeongju

    Sambulsa Temple – 삼불사 (Gyeongju)

    Temple History Sambulsa Temple, which means “Three Buddhas Temple” in English, is located on the northwest side of Mt. Namsan (494 m) in Gyeongju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. It’s believed that the stone triad dates back to the early 7th century. They are believed to be the oldest full-sized stone Buddhist statues in Gyeongju. In fact, they are believed to be some of the earliest examples of Buddhist art in all of Korea. Sambulsa Temple was constructed in 1923 to house the Stone Standing Buddha Triad in Bae-dong. The historic triad is Korean Treasure #63. Originally, the Stone Standing Buddha Triad in Bae-dong was located further up the mountain at the Seonbangsa-ji Temple…

  • Gyeongju

    Mangdeoksa-ji Temple Site – 망덕사지 (Gyeongju)

    Temple Site History Mangdeoksa-ji Temple Site is located in and among the rice fields of Gyeongju just south of Mt. Nangsan (99.5 m) and Sacheonwangsa-ji Temple Site. Mangdeoksa Temple means “Aspiring Virtue Temple” in English. There is some debate as to when the temple was completed, but the Flagpole Supports at Mangdeoksa-ji Temple Site were erected in 685 A.D. And even if this date isn’t believed, it’s assumed by most historians that the temple was built either during the reign of King Sinmun of Silla (r. 681-692 A.D.) or King Munmu of Silla (r. 661-681 A.D.). The Mangdeoksa-ji Temple Site has an interesting connection to the neighbouring the Sacheonwangsa-ji Temple…

  • North Korea

    Kaesimsa Temple – 개심사 (Mt. Chilbosan, Hamgyongbuk-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Kaesimsa Temple [Gaesimsa Temple] is located on Mt. Chilbosan (1,103 m) in Hamgyongbuk-to, North Korea. And for the rest of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. Kaesimsa Temple was first founded in 826 A.D. during the Palhae [Balhae] Kingdom (698-926 A.D.). The temple would later be restored in 1377 during the Koryo [Goryeo] Dynasty (918-1392). Originally, it was believed that the temple was first established in 1377. However, during excavation work and repairs conducted at the temple in 1983, it was discovered that the temple was in fact founded in 826 A.D., which…

  • North Korea

    Kangsosa Temple – 강서사 (Paechon, Hwanghaenam-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Kangsosa Temple [Gangseosa Temple] is located at the foot of Mt. Baekmasan in Paechon [Baecheon], Hwanghaenam-to, North Korea. And for some of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. The exact date of when Kangsosa Temple [Gangseosa Temple] was established is unclear; however, it’s believed to have been first established by Doseon-guksa (826-898 A.D.) at the end of Unified Silla (668-935 A.D.). Originally the temple was known as Yonggunsa Temple [Yeonggeunsa Temple] until the end of the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392), when the name of the temple changed to its current name of Kangsosa Temple…

  • Gyeongsangbuk-do

    Daebisa Temple – 대비사 (Cheongdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do)

    Temple History Daebisa Temple is located in Cheongdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do. Daebisa Temple was first founded in 566 A.D. by the monk Sinseung. Originally, the temple was known as Sojakgapsa Temple. Later, the temple was expanded by the monk Wongwang-guksa (558-638 A.D.) in 600 A.D. It was at this time that the temple was renamed Daebigapsa Temple. As for the name change, it’s slightly unclear as to how it got its name. One theory is that the temple got its name from a Silla Kingdom (57 B.C. – 935 A.D.) queen. Supposedly the temple is named after this queen that stayed at the temple for an extended period of time. Originally, Daebisa…

  • North Korea

    Yangchonsa Temple – 양천사 (Kowon, Hamyongnam-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Yangchonsa Temple [Yangcheonsa Temple] is located in Kowon [Gowon], Hamyongnam-to, North Korea. And for the rest of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. Yangchonsa Temple was first founded in 753 A.D. Originally, the temple consisted of a Wontong-jeon Hall and a Kukrak-jeon Hall [Geukrak-jeon Hall]. Very little is known about the temple until 1677, when Yangchonsa Temple was rebuilt by the monk Myo-ryeon. In 1708, the Taeung-jeon Hall [Daeung-jeon Hall] would be constructed. And in 1729, the Manse-ru Pavilion was reconstructed. The bell that hangs inside the current Manse-ru Pavilion was cast in…

  • Gyeongsangbuk-do

    Daeunam Hermitage – 대운암 (Cheongdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do)

    Hermitage History Daeunam Hermitage is located on the southern part of the Mt. Yonggaksan (696.8 m) mountain range on Mt. Oryesan in northeastern Cheongdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do. Daeunam Hermitage was first established in 1868 near the end of the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910). Daeunam Hermitage was eventually destroyed in the 1900s by fire, and it would be rebuilt by Buam-seonsa in 1930. More recently, Daeunam Hermitage has grown in size with the additions of the Sanshin-gak Hall in 1996, the dorms in 1998, and the Gwaneum-jeon Hall in 2000. Daeunam Hermitage is also home to Gyeongsangbuk-do Cultural Property Material #309, which is the Seated Wooden Gwaneum-bosal Statue and Accompanying Relics of Daeunam Hermitage.…

  • Busan

    Bokcheonsa Temple – 복천사 (Yeongdo-gu, Busan)

    Temple History Bokcheonsa Temple is located in Yeongdo-gu, Busan on the west side of Mt. Bongraesan (396.2 m). According to tradition, it’s believed that Bokcheonsa Temple was founded by the monk Naong Hyegeun (1320-1376) at the end of the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392). However, the exact date of the temple’s founding remains unknown. At the time of its founding, Bokcheonsa Temple was known as Haeunam Hermitage. During the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), Yeong-do Island was known as Jeolyeong-do Island. It was at this time that the island was closed off to the general public for a couple of reasons. First, it was to protect the land from Japanese pirates. Secondly, the land…

  • North Korea

    Sounsa Temple – 서운사 (Yongbyon, Pyonganbuk-to, North Korea)

    Temple History Sounsa Temple [Seounsa Temple] is located in Yongbyon, Pyonganbuk-to, North Korea on Mt. Yaksan. And for some of this article, it should be noted, that the spelling of North Korean places will use the North Korean style of spelling. According to the “Sounsa Hyangbuldabbi,” the temple was first founded in 1345. As for the name of the temple, the reason that it was named Sounsa Temple [Seounsa Temple] is because it was always cloudy in the area around the temple. The current temple shrine halls at Sounsa Temple [Seounsa Temple] date back to 1654. And they were rebuilt in 1678 and 1756. Until recently, Sounsa Temple consisted of…