Hwaseong is the city wall surrounding the old center of Suwon, built in the 18th century. The wall has 4 main gates at the north-south and east-west diagonals of the city, several smaller gates and defense towers and command structures. The wall stretches over 5.5 km and most of it has been restored in the 1970's making it worth to visit and stroll along. It is listed as a Unesco World Heritage site.
The initiator of building the fortress, King Jeongjo, meant to make Suwon the new capital of Korea. This never took place probably because of his sudden death. What happened exactly is unknown but there was strong opposition to changing the capital among politicians.
Everyday several events take place around the fortress walls and in October the Suwon Hwaseong Cultural Festival is held at the Hwaseong Haenggung Palace, the heart of the old city and Janganmun Gate. This festival is one of the largest held in Korea.
The wall and its structures can be visited all year round. There is no admission fee for visiting the walls. If you wish to visit the palace or museums there is a small admission fee to be paid.
Suwon lies approximately 30 km south of Seoul.
Parking is easiest at Hwaseong Haeunggung Palace, Yeonmudae, Changnyongmun Gate.