Find UNESCO World Heritage-listed treasures and royal relics contrasted with a modern skyline in this city, famed as one of the last of its kind in South Korea.

Suwon is a historical landmark and the biggest city in the province of Gyeonggi. Almost entirely enclosed by 18th-century fortifications, Suwon’s city center showcases an astonishing fusion of old and new. Explore dazzling streets brimming with shops, venues and markets. Trace the city’s heritage back to the Joseon dynasty when you explore old city walls and fortified palace buildings, uncovering fascinating royal history and traditions as you go.

The UNESCO World Heritage-listed Hwaseong Fortress provides a remarkable introduction to Suwon. Seoul’s 18th-century ruler, King Jeongjo, constructed the fort as a military stronghold and shrine to his late father. Stroll along the city walls to discover fascinating military innovations used by the fort’s architects. Find the fort’s four gateways, which point in the cardinal compass points, as well as magnificent city views from the fort’s vantage points. Paldalmun Gate showcases the fort’s strategic design and today stands sentinel in the city’s heart. The fort’s cultural and historical significance is explained at the Suwon Hwaseong Museum. Gather insights into the city’s first ruler at King Jeongjo’s residence, Hwaseong Haenggung Palace.

The city’s heritage listing has made it a sanctuary for architecture and centuries-old traditions. Explore local customs and cultures at the Korean Folk Village and the Suwon Cultural Foundation. Learn about the wider province at the Gyeonggi Provincial Museum. Despite Suwon’s rich history, the city is not stuck in the past. Cutting-edge technologies and innovative designs invented here are showcased at the Samsung Innovation Museum. Modern art takes center stage at the Nam June Paik Art Centre.

Suwon is a regional hub a short distance south of South Korea’s capital. Reach the city from Seoul in less than 45 minutes by train. Busan is about a 3-hour train ride away. Make a daytrip from Seoul to Suwon, with plenty to discover in this fascinating city. Alternatively, stay overnight within the old city walls and experience the hum of Suwon’s downtown district.