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May 18th National Cemetery

200 Minju-ro, Buk-gu, Gwangju, South Korea
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Ranked #2 of 14 Attractions in Gwangju
Type: Historic Sites
8 visitor photos
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12 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Any
English first
Amarillo, Texas
Top Contributor
200 reviews 200 reviews
126 attraction reviews
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2014

I was unaware of Gwangju's history as a hotbed for democratic reform in the 1970's and 1980's. The May 18th National Cemetery is impressive not only as a memorial to the victims of Korea's violent military crackdown during May 18 - 27, 1980, but also as a history museum and educational center. I couldn't help but be moved by my... More

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Seoul, South Korea
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
25 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014

We went on a rainy Monday, but in no way did this take away from the experience. (If anything, it added to the solemness.) The cemetery is a bit aways from the city and a lot of locals get a little confused about foreigners wanting to visit it, but it was worth it. As you enter, on the left there... More

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Busan, South Korea
Top Contributor
208 reviews 208 reviews
199 attraction reviews
78 helpful votes 78 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

The bus leaves from the main bus station and takes about an hour. To the right of the main memorial and cemetery area is a photo room and to the left is a museum which is very detailed in the history, giving an hour by hour record of the two main days.

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Singapore, Singapore
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

The cemetery provided an insight to the political movements in South Korea in the 1980s, which is little known to foreigners. The tombs, monuments, documentaries and artifacts served as a reminder of South Korea's struggle to true democracy. Visiting the cemetery was a humbling experience. There were not many visitors to the place at any given time. A downside would... More

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Launceston, Tasmania
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
13 attraction reviews
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

The Gwangju massacre must never be forgotten and this very moving memorial will enrich your understanding of the Korean people, their culture and their history. Visit the 5/18 Memorial in respect of those who sacrificed their lives for democracy in Korea.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
4 reviews 4 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2012

I visited here with my co-teacher (who speaks Korean) and enjoyed the scenery and the museum itself. I recommend it for anyone interested and with the ability to transport yourself to there. You won't regret it.

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Gwangju, South Korea
16 reviews 16 reviews
9 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2012

Before coming to Gwangju, I tried to understand the Democracy Movement, but the little information available in English was confusing. The National Cemetery had a great 30 minute (free!) documentary with so much information, pictures, and video. It was shocking to see pictures of tanks in the middle of downtown Gwangju, but very humbling. Very few people were visiting the... More

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Daejeon, South Korea
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2012

The May 18th Park is a an all around good afternoon activity. There are many places to see including the temples, memorials, and a student center. There is quite a bit of history, but only a few of the signs were translated. You can get a good idea of what happened from the statues. There are parks, with the exercise... More

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Richmond, Virginia
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
17 attraction reviews
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2012

We were there for the anniversary in May, it was a humbling experience where you could feel the spirit of those who fought for freedom. I definitely walked away with a greater appreciation of what happened and how it changed the lives of people in S Korea.

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Gwangju, South Korea
17 reviews 17 reviews
14 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2012

The May 18th National Cemetery is perhaps the biggest must do for those visiting Gwangju. The city is known for the protests and massacre of 1980 and this cemetery stands as an excellent testament to those events. The cemetery is easily reached from the Gwangju train station by taking the 518 bus from the road outside. A short walk from... More

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