This week, there’s a special festival in Seoul offering a rare peek at a UNESCO World Heritage. Goryeo Daejanggyeong known as the Eighty-thousand Tripitaka or the Tripitaka Koreana, is a set of ancient Buddhist scripture woodblocks. It’s the most complete collection of Buddhist texts in the world, engraved on 80,000 woodblocks between 1237 and 1248.

According to UNESCO’s website, They were carved “… in an appeal to the authority of the Buddha in the defense of Korea against the Mongol invasions. They are recognised by Buddhist scholars around the world for their outstanding accuracy and superior quality. The woodblocks are also valuable for the delicate carvings of the Chinese characters, so regular as to suggest that they are the work of a single hand.”

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The woodblocks are housed in a temperature-controlled building at Haeinsa Temple, Gyeongsannam prefecture. During the festival, an enlarged edition of the Tripitaka will be on display, and visitors can walk along a series of themed mountain trails based on Buddhist thought, enjoy temple food and see prayer lanterns.

Reserved ticket prices for adults range from 6,000-8,000 KRW, and on-the-door tickets 8,000-10,000 KRW. Take a look at the official website here, though it’s in Korean only.

Read more about the Tripitaka Koreana here.


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