Republic of Korea
** Observer member
Asia-Pacific Regional Secretariat – Gyeongju
Asia-Pacific, Regional Overview
World Heritage Cities are more than man-made buildings and places. They are cradles of memories and human experiences, where countless interactions and creations happen. They are alive, and we want to keep them alive. However, the authorities responsible for taking care of our cities encounter difficulties in addressing issues in mutually satisfactory ways.
Especially in Asia and the Pacific region, the reconciliation of developing a city while conserving protected sites needs a new and strong impetus. More than half of the world’s population lives in this region, of which close to half live on less than a dollar per day. Hence, the region contains the world’s largest number of people living in poverty. With its diversity as an asset, the several countries have enjoyed remarkable economic growth in the last four decades. The region is experiencing rapid changes in economic development, population growth and urbanization, social transformation, and technological development, and world heritage cities in the region are facing countless challenges such as armed conflicts, pollution, uncontrolled urbanization, unchecked tourist development, and the gap between modern life style and traditional life style.
Gyeongju, home of OWHC-AP was the capital for a thousand years during the Silla dynasty which unified the Korean peninsula in 668. Because of countless and priceless monuments and artifacts scattered around the city, Gyeongjuu is considered as a large “Museum without walls”. The contemporary residents of the city, being so proud of the historical value of their hometown, have not neglected their duty to preserve the heritage as much as they can.
There are three world heritages:
- Seokguram Grotto and Bulguksa Temple
- Gyeongju Historic Areas
- Historic Villages of Korea: Hahoe and Yangdong
OWHC-AP was founded in December 2013, Gyeongju, Republic of Korea. Its first regional meeting was held from 24th to 26th of September 2014.
For further information, please visit our official web site www.owhcap.org or
click the link of the Facebook page
or take a look at this owhcleaflet.pdf