advertisement

South Korea's oldest wooden structure, parts of this temple miraculously survived destruction during the Imjin Waeran. The temple was originally built by Monk Uisang in A.D. 673, during the reign of King Munmu of the Shilla Dynasty. The 850-year-old structure sits in the left courtyard of the compound. The temple itself is the largest in Andong. Surrounded by ancient pine trees gnarled with age, you can compare architecture from both the Goryeo and the Joseon dynasties.

About 20 minutes on foot east of Bongjeongsa is a peaceful little hermitage, the Yeongsang-am, with undecorated wooden walls and humble buildings. A 20-minute walk to the west of Bongjeongsa is another hermitage, Jijo-am, which is dedicated to the goddess of mercy, Gwaneum. Even farther north (about a 30-min. walk) are the remains of a small temple, Gaemoksa, also built by Monk Uisang.