July 13, 2024
KCNA Naenara (En)

Moran Hill Noted for Scenic, Historical and Monumental Heritage

Date: 24/06/2024 | Source: Naenara (En) | Read original version at source

Moran Hill is adjacent to the right side of the Taedong River that meanders through Pyongyang Municipality.

From olden times, when it comes to the scenery of Pyongyang, Moran Hill has been a premier choice.

The hill abuts Ryongnam Hill to the north, Mansu and other low hills to the south, Chongnyu Cliff to the east, and the Taedong River at its foot. It commands a view of the Rungna Islet in the middle of the river.

It consists of several adjoining peaks that rise along the gentle ridge extending northward, southward and westward, centred on Choesung Pavilion (95 metres above sea level) in Mt Kumsu sprawling along the Taedong River.

The peaks resemble a peony blossom, hence its name Moran, aka Hambangme.

The mysterious and harmonious landform, luxuriant green foliage and beautiful flowers blooming from season to season blend together to make a sight to behold.

The main bedrock of the hill is sandstone and shale of the Mesozoic Jurassic period. The soil is brownish forest soil, rich in humus and thick in the cover, which is favourable for plants to grow.

Moran Hill is called a garden of Pyongyang for its rich variety of flora.

Moranbong Park, with an area of over 270 hectares, is home to more than 200 000 trees of over 180 species, including Metasequoia glyptostroboides , pine nut and other coniferous trees, acacia, ginkgo and other broad-leaf trees, apricot, peach and other fruit trees, as well as magnolia, azalea, Rhododendron yedoense and other shrubs.

Furthermore, various beautiful wild birds, including the national bird magpie, Eophona migratoria and pheasant, add beauty to the scenery of the hill.

Chongnyu Cliff boasts a rare pagoda tree and a tree fossil, both preserved as natural monuments. There are a host of historical relics in different parts of the hill.

The view Ulmil Pavilion on Moran Hill commands in spring and the sight of the first full moon of the year on Pubyok Pavilion on Chongnyu Cliff are among the eight famous scenes of Pyongyang.

Ulmil Pavilion was built as a military commanding site in the mid-6th century while the keep of the Walled City of Pyongyang was under construction in the period of Koguryo Kingdom (277 BC—AD 668). Legends have it that fairy Ulmil flew down to have a good time on the pavilion and Ulmil, a military commander of Koguryo, fought bravely to defend the pavilion.

Pubyok Pavilion on Chongnyu Cliff was originally called Yongmyong Pavilion, but it was renamed as it seemed to float on the crystal-clear water flowing under the cliff.

According to a tale, Kim Hwang Won, a famous poet in the period of Koryo Kingdom (918-1392), was so captivated by its scenery that he tried to compose a poem to sing of it, but he failed to finish it and lamented his lack of ability after throwing away his writing brush.

In addition, there are Choesung Pavilion, Chilsong Gate, Hyonmu Gate and Jongum Gate around the hill.

Blending in with such old buildings as Ulmil and Choesung pavilions are new ones built on the intermediate peaks and their hillside, namely Sungni, Phyonghwa, Aeryon, Rogum, Songga and Ondal.

At the foot of the hill stand monumental edifices such as Kim Il Sung Stadium, the Arch of Triumph, and Kaeson Youth Park and other modern cultural facilities. The iconic Rungna Bridge and the Chongnyu Bridge stretch to the two tunnels named Kumnung that pierce the hill.

Ko Jin Bom

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