Gwanghwamun Square [광화문광장]
Gwanghwamun Square [광화문광장], also known as Gwanghwamun Plaza, is a public space located in the center of Sejong-ro, Jongno, Seoul. It is framed by the main gate of Gyeongbokgung Palace and Sejongno Intersection and is framed by Sejong Center for the Performing Arts [세종문화회관] among others.
The square is mostly known for its two landmark statues. In its center stands the statue of King Sejong the Great of Joseon and 250 meters behind it, the statue of Admiral Yi Sun-shin with its 12.23 fountain.
This site was selected in 2012 as one of 100 regular filming locations for movies and dramas by the Seoul Metropolitan Government and the Seoul Film Council, and featured in the brochure The Places In Seoul Cinema Fell in Love With (영화가 사랑한 서울 촬영지 100선).
Gwanghwamun Square is located in Seoul’s neighborhood Sejongno [세종로] in the Jongno District [Jongno-gu/종로구].
172 Sejong-daero, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울특별시 종로구 세종대로 지하 172
Geolocation: 37.572291, 126.976859
Gwanghwamun Station [광화문역], Seoul Subway Line 5, Exit 9
Entry section —
Gyeongbokgung Palace’s main gate
Kim Boong-do (Ji Hyun-woo) lands here several times when time-travelling from Joseon times in Queen In-Hyun’s Man (인현왕후의 남자) (tvN, 2012); as seen in episode 1 and 13.
Teasers Filmed Here
The first teaser for Moonlight Drawn by Clouds/Love in the Moonlight (구르미 그린 달빛) (KBS2, 2016), ‘KBS 월화드라마 구르미 그린 달빛 티저1’ was filmed here with Crown Prince Hyomyeong (Park Bo-gum) doing the Boombastic dance.
The preview of Manhole (맨홀-이상한 나라의 필) (KBS2, 2017) was also filmed here.
Statue of Admiral Yi Sun Shin
The ‘Gwanghwamun Riot’ is said to have happened at this square in episode 1 of The Devil Judge (악마판사) (tvN, 2021).
The bus that Han Seo-woo (Chae Soo-bin) and Moon Ha-won (Jung Hae-in) takes in episode 4 of A Piece of Your Mind/Half of a Half (반의 반) (tvN, 2020) passes by the square, with this lit-up statue seen in the background.
Wi Dae-han (Song Seung-heon) makes a public apology near this statue for being an unfilial son to his late father in episode 1 of The Great Show/Widaehan Sho (위대한 쇼) (tvN, 2019).
Lee Jung-in (Han Ji-min), Yoo Ji-ho (Jung Hae-in) and his son Yoo Eun-woo (Ha Yi-an) pass by here on their way home after having met Jung-in’s family in final episode 32 (full episode 16) of One Spring Night (봄밤) (MBC, 2019).
Na Wang-sik (Choi Jin-hyuk) calls Min Yoo-ra (Lee Elijah) from a telephone booth close to here in episode 9 of The Last Empress/Empress’s Dignity (황후의 품격) (SBS, 2018-19) and asks her to meet up.
Cha Hyun-o (Shin Hyun-soo) rushes by this statue on his bike in episode 2 of Twelve Nights (열두밤) (Channel A, 2018) on his way to see the sunrise early in the morning on the third day of his short 4-days stay in Seoul in 2010.
This statue is seen in the entry part of episode 1 of Radio Romance (라디오 로맨스) (KBS2, 2018).
This statue figures in the background when Joseon acupuncturist Heo Im (Kim Nam-gil), finds the remains of his clinic Haeminseo in 2017 close to Gwanghwamun Square [geolocation: 37.568927, 126.977361] after time traveling in episode 1 of Live Up To Your Name, Dr. Heo/Deserving of the Name (명불허전) (tvN, 2017).
Lee Yoon-sung (Lee Min-ho) makes a stop here when arriving in Seoul in episode 1 of City Hunter (시티헌터) (SBS, 2011) — while Kim Na-na (Park Min-young) passes out flyers just a couple of meters away from him.
Kim Hyeon-jun (Lee Byung-hun) and Kim Sun-hwa (Kim So-yeon) come to Gwanghwamun Square to find the bomb planted here by terrorists in episode 17 of IRIS (Airiseu/아이리스) (KBS2, 2009); we see the statue in the background.
Also seen in episode 3 of The Sound of Your Heart: Reboot (마음의 소리: Reboot) (KBS2/Netflix, 2018); Flower Boy Next Door (이웃집 꽃미남) (tvN, 2013).
TEASER FILMED HERE
In the 2nd Teaser Trailer of the The King: Eternal Monarch (더킹:영원의 군주) (SBS, 2020), Lee Gon (Lee Min-ho) and Jung Tae-eul/Luna (Kim Go-eun) meet on this square in front of this statue and he hugs her all of a sudden — this might be callback reference to City Hunter; also written by Kim Eun-sook as Lr points out (thanks!).
Statue of King Sejong the Great of Joseon
The test run of AR Game Next in South Korea in episode 7 of Memories of the Alhambra (알함브라 궁전의 추억) (tvN, 2018-19) takes place right in front of this statue. While a couple of players fight different warriors (which is monitored by Park Sun-ho (Lee Seung-joon) and his team from a distance), Yoo Jin-woo (Hyun-Bin) drives by and shoots all opponents as player Zinu.
This statue is seen in the face-off between Kim Hyeon-jun (Lee Byung-hun) and Kim Sun-hwa (Kim So-yeon) and the terrorists in episode 17 of IRIS (아이리스) (KBS2, 2009).
We also see the statue in the backdrop when Choi Hee-jin (Yoo In-na) parks her car because she has a panic attack at the moment that Kim Boong-do (Ji Hyun-woo) takes his life in Joseon times in final episode 16 of Queen In-Hyun’s Man (인현왕후의 남자) (tvN, 2012).
MOVIE FILMED HERE
— Kim Hyun-woo (Moon Chae-won) films a weather forecaster in fronton this statue in Love Forecast (오늘의 연애) (2015).
— The Spies/The Spy (Gancheop/간첩) (2012)
1-68 Sejong-daero, Sejongno, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울특별시 종로구 세종로 1-68
Geolocation: 37.570943, 126.976923
Ice Skating Rink (2009-2010)
Lee Shin-young (Park Jin-hee) and Ha Min-jae (Kim Bum) come here to ice skate in episode 6 of The Woman Who Still Wants to Marry/Still, Marry Me (아직도 결혼하고 싶은 여자) (MBC, 2010).
This skating rink, typically located around Seoul City Hall, was relocated to the area behind the King Sejong statue from late 2009-early 2010.
— submitted by Marion KDL, updated by Mich KDL; last updated 18/06/2022
— Photos taken by © by Mich KDL, 2014, by © Marion KDL, July 2012 and by © dihischu, 2013