Jongno District

Jongno District (Jongno-gu) is a gu, or district, in central Seoul, South Korea. It takes its name from a major local street, Jongno, which means "Bell Street".


종로구 · 鐘路區
Sejong-ro looking south, fair on the pedestrian stretch
Location of Jongno-gu in Seoul
Coordinates: 37°35′58″N 126°58′29″E
CountrySouth Korea
Special CitySeoul
Administrative dong19
  MayorKim Yeong-Jong (김영종)
  Total23.92 km2 (9.24 sq mi)
  Density6,500/km2 (17,000/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+9 (Korea Standard Time)
Postal code
Area code02-300,700
WebsiteJongno-gu official website


Jongno District has been the center of the city for 600 years, since it is where the Joseon dynasty established its capital city. Jongno District is commonly referred to as the face and heart of Korea because of its important roles in the politics, economics, culture, and history as the capital city.[2] Jongno District is home to palaces in which the kings used to reside and work, such as Gyeongbok Palace, Changdeok Palace, Changgyeonggung and Unhyeon Palace. The South Korean president's current residence, the Cheongwadae, is also located in Jongno District.[2]

With the historical value and cultural properties, Jongno District attracts visitors' attention. These include the restored Cheonggyecheon stream, the traditional neighborhood of Insa-dong, and the Jongmyo shrine. Art Center Nabi and Gahoe Museum, a relics museum is also located in the district. A number of colleges and universities are located here; these include the main campuses of Sungkyunkwan University and Baehwa Women's College.

Jongno District is also home to Jogyesa, the chief temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism.

The area is also home to the Gwanghwamun Plaza a public open space on Sejongno[3] and is part of the Seoul Metropolitan Government's plans for environmentally friendly renovation projects such as the Cheonggye Stream and Seoul Plaza.[4] It is also of historical significant as the location for royal administrative buildings and features statues of the Admiral Yi Sun-sin of Joseon Dynasty and King Sejong the Great of Joseon.[5]



Jongno district has been included in capital of Joseon dynasty for 600 years. Hanyang, the capital of Joseon included Jongno district and Jung district. In October, 1394 (the third year of King Taejo’s reign), Taejo Lee Seong-gye moved his capital from Gagyeong to Hanyang. The capital of Goryeo, Gagyeong, had a strong base of traditional forces against Lee Seong-gye. In addition, the topography divination theory says that the new dynasty was unlucky due to its failure, and that it also moved to Hanyang with regard to water transport of rice and military geographical conditions. Following the relocation of the capital city, the Joseon government pushed for the construction of Hanyang, starting with the construction of Jongmyo. The construction of the main palace, Gyeongbok Palace and the separate palace, Changdeok Palace was done. In 1395, it was renamed as Hanyang Department. In 1399(the first year of King Jeongjong’s reign), the capital was moved to Gagyeong for a while because of the Prince’s rebellion but, in 1405(the 5th year of king Taejong’s reign), the capital changed back to Hanyang. The city grew into a large city with about 200,000 people at King Sejong’s time.


As the traditional heart of Seoul, Jongno is still an important business center. Notable companies based in Jongno include Kumho Asiana Group, Kyobo Life. Lotte Group, SK Group, Hyundai Engineering & Construction, Daewoo E&C, Daelim Group, East Asia Daily and many more.

The headquarters of South Korean skincare retailer The Face Shop is located in the LG Gwanghwamun Building on sinmunno 2-ga.[6]

The head office of Air Seoul is in the Kumho Asiana Main Tower in Sinmunno 1-ga, Jongro Gu.[7]

The politics of Jongno district

Jongno district is called as the most important district in politics. It is located in the heart of the Republic of Korea, which includes Cheong Wa Dae, Seoul City Hall and three large squares, and is also the first to appear in the National Election Commission's election statistics. Therefore, it is usually the first among the local districts in the exit investigation. Because of the symbolism, all political parties are very concerned about the nomination of candidates for the district, and most minor parties choose local constituencies in Jongno. Typically, three presidents used to be the politician of Jongno district. Yun Posun,No Muhyeon, Lee Myungbak used to be the politician of Jongno district. Originally, it has been regarded as a Conservative area in Seoul due to its villages and native areas such as Pyeongchang, Samcheong-dong, Sajik-dong, Jongro 1 and 4, but now it is changing into a stronger democrats due to the votes of Sungkyunkwan University students in Hyehwa-dong. Until the early and mid-2010s, conservative influences were strong. But now it has become a super strong democratic area. Currently, the politician of Jongno district is Chung Syekyun and the head of Jongno-gu Office is Kim Youngjong

Government and infrastructure

The headquarters of the Ministry of Security and Public Administration is located in the Seoul Government Complex in Jongno District.[8] The third and fourth floors of the same building house the Ministry of Unification.[9]

The headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is located in the MOFA Building in Jongno District.[10]

Previously the Ministry of Education had its headquarters in the Central Government Complex in Jongno District.[11] The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism also had its headquarters in Jongno District.[12] The Ministry of Health and Welfare had its headquarters in the Hyundai Building.[13] The offices of those ministries have moved to Sejong City.

Before merged into another ministry in 2008, the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries was located in Jongro-gu.[14] It was re-established in Sejong City.


Those are some of the district administrative dongs (행정동). For a complete list, see here.


Historical places

There are various historical attractions in Jongno-gu, because Jongno-gu was the capital of Joseon for 500 years. The three most famous palaces (Gyeongbokgung Palace, Changdeokgung Palace, Changgyeonggung Palace), Heunginjimun Gate, Bosingak, Jongmyo Shrine, and Sungkyunkwan University are among other historical attractions.

Gyeongbokgung Palace

First of five palaces built during the Joseon Dynasty, it is the royal palace of the Joseon Dynasty.

Changdeokgung Palace

One of the palaces of Joseon Dynasty in Seoul. It was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997

Changgyeonggung Palace

After liberation, and Japanese occupation, called 'Chang Kyung Won) (for more than 40 years visited Changgyeong Palace in accordance with the restored palace in 1986 but was called to.


This is Korea's Treasure No. 1.


It is a representative building representing the Seoul Metropolitan Government, and the bell logo in Jongno is also modeled after the Bosingak Bell. It is known as one of the most popular New Year celebrations in South Korea as the New Year's Day bell ringing event is held on December 31 every year, when the bell rings at the Bosingak Bell.


The Confucian shrine of the royal family, which houses the new names of kings and queens of the Joseon Dynasty and of the surviving kings and queens.

Sungkyunkwan University

Students of Joseon Dynasty studied Neo-Confucianism.

Cheong Wa Dae

Cheong Wa Dae is the current South Korean government. You have to make a reservation in advance if you want to see the sights.

Cultural place

Daehakro (Hyehwa)

Daehakro has a wide range of cultural performances, and sometimes even blocks the streets and concerts. Also, there are so many facilities to play that teenagers and university students visit.


It is one of the representative streets of Seoul where you can get access to the traditional culture of Korea, and it is a must-have course that is often considered a tourist attraction for foreigners traveling in Seoul.

Inwangsan Mountain

The wide range of mountains offers light hiking, including the Seoul fortress, and you can watch the drama shooting station line leading to Goung-dong, Buam-dong and Pyeongchang-dong. Samcheong-dong and Buam-dong are popular as dating places thanks to their pleasant walking trails and cultural spaces and cafes.

Naksan Park

Naksan Park spanning Dongsoong-dong and Changshin-dong, Hwanghwa-dong, has a great night view. It was also used as a filming location for dramas.


Cheonggyecheon is a 10.9-kilometre-long (6.8 mi), public recreation space along a creek. Parts of it are in Jongno.

Bukchon Hanok Village

Bukchon Hanok Village is a replica of traditional Korean housing from the Joseon Dynasty.


The Jongno-gu Office hosts various information programs for visitors. [15]

District Council

The current mayor of Jong-no district is Kim Yeong-jong. The district council serves administrative functions such as Foreign Seal Registration, International Marriage, Adoption, Acknowledgement reports and Alien Registration Certificates for foreigners residing in Jongno District.



Private schools:

Public schools:

Sister cities

See also


  1. Korean Statistical Information Service (Korean) > Population and Household > Census Result (2010) > Population by Administrative district, Sex and Age / Alien by Administrative district and Sex, Retrieved 2010-06-02.
  2. "About Jongno-gu". Jongno-gu Official website. Archived from the original on 2004-08-05. Retrieved 2008-04-23.
  3. "Popular plaza". Joongang Daily. 3 August 2009. Archived from the original on 11 April 2013. Retrieved 27 February 2013.
  4. Hoh, Kui-Seek (3 August 2009). "The road less travelled, by cars". Joongang Daily. Archived from the original on 11 April 2013. Retrieved 27 February 2013.
  5. "Gwanghwamun Plaza: Let's Try to Turn New Place Into National Symbol". Korea Times. 2 August 2009. Archived from the original on 28 December 2014. Retrieved 27 February 2013.
  6. "Company location". The Face Shop official website. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
  7. Home. Air Seoul. Retrieved on November 1, 2016. "Kumho Asiana Main Tower,76, SaemunanRo Jongro Gu Seoul" – Korean address: "(우)03185 서울특별시 종로구 새문안로 76 금호아시아나 본관"
  8. "Location." (Archive) Ministry of Security and Public Administration. Retrieved on January 1, 2013. "209 Sejong-daero(Sejong-ro), Jongno-gu, Seoul, Republic of Korea"
  9. "Location & Contact Info." (Archive) Ministry of Unification. Retrieved on January 1, 2013. "Ministry of Unification Address: Government Complex – Seoul , 209 Sejong-daero(Sejong-ro). Jongno-gu, Republic of Korea"
  10. "Location." (Archive) Ministry of Foreign Affairs (South Korea). Retrieved on January 1, 2014. "Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 60, Sajik-ro 8-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul, Korea (110–787)"
  11. "Contact Info Archived 2014-01-01 at" (Archive) The Globe Program. Retrieved on January 1, 2013. "Ministry of Education & Human Resources Development Central Government Complex, 77-6 Sejong-no, Jongno-gu Seoul, 110–760 South Korea"
  12. "Location." (Archive) Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. April 23, 2012. Retrieved on January 1, 2014. "Address: 215 Changgyeonggung-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul, 110–360 Korea"
  13. "Location." (Archive) Ministry of Health and Welfare. Retrieved on January 1, 2014. "Ministry of Health & Welfare Hyundai Building 6~12 F" and "Ministry of Health & Welfare (MW): 75 Yulgok-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul, Korea 110-793, call center 129"
  14. "Home (". Archived from the original on February 1, 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
  15. "종로엔 다 있다".
  16. "Contact." Lycée International Xavier. Retrieved on 22 May 2014. "23, BIBONG-GIL (151, GUGI-DONG), JONGNO-GU, 110-804 SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA" – Address in Korean: "서울특별시 종로구 비봉길 23 (구기동 151) (우)110-804"
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