Hwaseong Fortress (Korean: Suwonhwaseong) was constructed as an act of family devotion by Jeongjo, the 22nd king of the Joseon Dynasty, and to strengthen his power, eradicate party conflict, and fortify the southern area of the capital. Construction was started along Mt. Paldalsan in January 1794 and completed in September 1796 under the supervision of Chae Jae-gong, a former minister and the magistrate of Yeongjungchubu County. During construction, equipment such as the Geojunggi, a type of traditional Korean crane, and potters’ wheels were developed and used to transport and assemble large stones.
The fortress suffered partial damage during Japanese colonial rule and the Korean War, but most of its original features have been restored with the help of the Hwaseong Seongyeokuigwe, the construction archive published in 1801 after the fortress was completed.
The fortress sprawls over both flat and hilly terrain, something not seen much in neighbouring China and Japan. It is designed to serve political and commercial as well as military functions and is a fine example of oriental fortresses.