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National Museum of Korea to reopen with caution

May 5, 2020 - 16:00 By Song Seung-hyun
National Museum of Korea in Seoul (National Museum of Korea)

The National Museum of Korea’s permanent exhibition hall will reopen Wednesday, more than two months after the entire museum was shut down in late February due to the spread of COVID-19.

The museum will accept 300 individual visitors per hour in observance of the government’s social distancing guidelines. To minimize personal contact, exhibition commentary service will not be provided until further notice. Visitors will have to make an online reservation in advance to enter the facility, which will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

All visitors must wear masks and have their temperature checked before entering the building. Once inside, they will have to scan a QR code, which will be provided when booking tickets online to proceed to the exhibition rooms.

Those who might have difficulties making online reservations, such as foreigners and the elderly, will be admitted after providing personal information such as a phone number. Admission is free.

For the children’s museum, only 70 people will be allowed per hour.

The National Museum of Korea originally planned to reopen its library for those who made a reservation in advance on Wednesday, however, it changed the plan on Monday afternoon to wait until the National Library of Korea makes its decision on when to reopen its facilities, including the resource room.

Meanwhile, the museum said that it has prepared several new exhibits and renovated some of its facilities ahead of the reopening.

A new film about ancient Egyptian mythology and additional books are available at its Egypt Gallery on the third floor, which was opened last year.

For the Japan Gallery, the museum has added a folding screen created by renowned Japanese painter Tani Buncho in 1834. The museum purchased the item in 2017.

The museum noted that it has also renovated the second and third floor rest areas to allow visitors to enjoy modern art pieces.

The National Museum of Korea also plans to continue expanding its online exhibition content, such as with virtual reality videos for those maintaining social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition to the National Museum of Korea, its 13 regional branches, the National Folk Museum of Korea, National Museum of Korean Contemporary History and National Hangeul Museum will also reopen some of their exhibition halls for visitors with reservations starting Wednesday.

By Song Seung-hyun (