Doors along the 'changho,' or corridors of Korean traditional buildings, are open for ventilation at Changdeok Palace during the heritage site's springtime tour program, Tuesday. Korea Times photo by Lee Hae-rin

Spring is around the corner and Changdeok Palace, arguably the most beautiful royal palace in Seoul, has its windows and doors flung open to welcome the springtime breeze and natural light into the historic building after it remained shut throughout winter.From Tuesday to Saturday, the Cultural Heritage Administration Royal Palaces and Tombs Center’s Changdeok Palace management office is revealing to visitors its interior conservation measures that keep the palace alive and sharing a rare peek into the ancient building where royals and their attendants used to reside. People used to live here in the palace and actually used the building — opening and closing the door, bringing light and air in and out. Now, that time has passed and we (staff) look over the space for maintenance, but buildings remain alive only when there are people living in them. Leaving the doors closed for too long could create distortions and make condensation,” an official from the palace complex’s management team told The Korea Times, Tuesday.

Thus, the team occasionally opens doors and windows of “changho,” or corridors of Korean traditional buildings with layers portals that connect the inside and outside, to encourage air and light circulation.Changho contributes to the building’s long lifespan by facilitating conservation and adds beauty to its landscape. It was in 2022 that the office developed a seasonal tour program. “We knew that the palace offers somewhat different and exceptional scenery through the frames of portals. So we decided to share with visitors these new viewpoints to look at this beautiful palace, just for a while as the spring nears,” the official said.If the doors and windows are left open for too long, the buildings could be damaged and wild animals could enter, he explained. Visitors may look inside the palace’s major buildings — Huijeongdang, Daejojeon and Nakseonjae halls — with doors wide open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.The changho opening program 메이저 may be canceled under strong winds or heavy rain. No reservation is required for entry.

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