The Tomb of King Kongmin
We haven’t spoken about Koryo yet. Koryo is “Korea” in the Korean tongue. The country spanning the peninsula bore that name for centuries. Its borders fluctuated but the idea is that the entire peninsula was one, under one king. Which, geographically, makes sense. The current separation along the 38th parallel is as artificial as the one along the 17th parallel in Vietnam.
There are a few nice relics from the Koryo dynastic times in North Korea. This is one of them. King Kongmin was the 31st, and the last, of the powerful Koryo dynasty. He died in 1374. Twenty years prior to that, he felt that his love for his wife was so strong, so beautiful, that he had his and her tomb built next to each other outside his capital of Kaeson. She is on the left and he is on the right. Unfortunately the tombs were vandalized many times over the centuries, but the structures remain pretty much intact. The site is beautiful indeed, and it being in North Korea, there is nothing built up around it and no signs from anyone advertising anything at all. The area feels pristine and peaceful and was truly delightful to visit, perched high up on its mountain and offering glimpses of the West Sea.