Bulguksa Temple 불국사 the most important buddhist temple, located in Gyeongju. It is another relic that was designated as a World Heritage List by UNESCO. It was built in Silla era and was famous for its stone relics.
Just before we reach the ticketing gate, there is a small park where cherry blossom trees grow. In spring, the cherry blossom flowers blooms and the trees full of these pretty pinkish-white flowers.
After entering the gate, we still need to walk for about 10-15 minutes to reach the temple site. Since the temple is located quite a distance from the car park, it is very serene and quiet. While walking, visitors can breath a fresh air from the trees naturally grow along the walking path.
The temple went for a few cycles of renovation. So it did during my visit that time, so I did not see the complete site of the temple. The most distinct features of the temple are the pagodas, Dabotap 다보탑 and Seokgatap 석가탑. Both pagodas are listed as Korean National Treasures nos. 20 and 21. Buddhist visitors are seen taking their turns to pray in front of the pagodas.
Within the temple complex, there are a few other national treasures : the Lotus Flower Bridge Yeonhwagyo 연화교, the Blue Cloud Bridge Cheongungyo 청운교 and the White Cloud Bridge Baegungyo 백운교, the seated gilt-bronze Vairocana Buddha statue and the seated gilt-bronze Amitabha Buddha statue, and the stone-lantern stupa.
Exploring the site of the temple, I reached the Geugnakjeon. In Korea tradition, pig is an animal symbolises wealth and good fortune. It is also believed that the animal drives away the evil spirits.
Within the structure of the Geunakjeon, there is a hidden pig. Finding it will be a bit tricky. I found it because there was an English-speaking tour group there, so I took my chance to listen to her too :p. The tour guide showed the location of the hidden pig, which is behind the Chinese-written ‘Geugnakjeon’ signboard.
The golden pig statue was placed in front of the Geunakjeon. It is said that those who touch it will be lucky and bless with good fortune. So don’t forget to try this tradition and see if you’ll get lucky!
Website (in Korean): www.bulguksa.or.kr
Adult (over 19): 4,000KRW
Youths (13-18 yrs old) / Group (over 30 people): 3,000KRW / 2,500KRW
Children (7-12 yrs old) / Group (over 30 people): 2,000KRW / 1,500KRW
Children (under 7) / Group (over 10 people): Free / 1,000KRW
Opening Hours: 7AM-6PM (Ticket booth closes at 5.30PM)