Old Streets of Jungnyeong
- Location: Sucheol-ri Punggi-eup, Yeongju
- Jungnyeong, Mungyeongsaejae, and Chupungnyeong are the three gateways to Yeongnam across the Sobaek Mountain Range, and Jungnyeong is the greatest of the three because of its age, location, height, and performance. Jungnyeong rises 689m above sea level where the 2nd Yeonhwa Peak of Mt. Sobaek and Dosol Peak connect.
Samguksagi writes, 『Jungnyeong opened in March of the 5th year of the reign of King Adala (158 B.C.),』 and Donggukyeojiseungram writes, 『Jukjuk discovered Jungnyeong in the 5th year of the reign of King Adala, but he was exhausted to death after that; Gogaemaru has a shrine to serve Jukjuk.』
Jungnyeong cherishes a long history with many sad stories. For a while in the Age of Three Empires, it was the border between Goguryeo and Silla where the Three Empires often battled against one another. Goguryeo dominated Jungnyeong in the last year of the reign of King Jangsu (around 470 B.C.). In the 12th year of the reign of Silla King Jinheung (551 B.C.), King Jinheung ordered eight generals, including General Geochilbu, to form an alliance with Baekje to attack Goguryeo and conquered 10 villages to the north of Jungnyeong. In the 1st year of the reign of King Yeongyang (590 B.C.), which is 40 years later, noted General Ondal of Goguryeo planned to lead his troop to Jungryeong and said to the King, 『I will not return if I fail to retrieve Jungryeong.』 These historical records (Samguksagi) tell us how important Jungryeong was at that time.
As many villages in northeast Gyeongsang-do Province used this path to travel to Seoul until the 1910s, this path was always crowded with nobles traveling to Seoul to take government examinations, government officers on special missions, and merchants, and was full of restaurants, lodging, and horse barns for the travelers.
This path was a part of the great arterial road system of southeast Korea for over 2,000 years, but was abandoned for several decades when the modern transportation system developed. The local government decided to restore it and reopened it (2.5km) in May 1999. In August 1999, Jungryeong Old Path road signs (Huibangsa Temple Station and Rungnyeong Hills) and legendary story panels (five along the path) were installed for visitors. The restored path has been very popular among family picnickers.