Let’s Go Korea

2008 Edition Copyright © 2008 Published by Korean Culture and Information Service Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism 15, Hyojaro, Jongno-gu, Seoul, Republic of Korea Telephone: 82-2-398-1910-9 Fax: 82-2-398-1882 All rights reserved Korean Culture and Information Service Printed in Seoul ISBN 978-89-7375-046-7 03910 Korean Government Publication Number 11-1371030-000018-10 For further information about Korea, please visit: www.korea.net

Korean Culture and Information Service
Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism


Have you ever heard about Korea located in the Far East Asia? Wouldn’t you want to know about the 5,000 years of Korean history, culture and Korean life style, where everybody loves kimchi and bulgogi? This book has the solutions to your curiosities about Korea. We, The Korean Culture and Information Service, which has been created as a means of promoting Korea for those of you who wish to know about Korea, has published the ‘Let’s go Korea’ for you, teenagers. This book must be satisfied with your interests and makes you want to know more about Korea. We are excited to promote Korea to teenagers worldwide through our new book, ‘Let’s go Korea’. It has characters teenagers can identify with who will introduce the country’s popular tourist attractions. The emphasis is on showing interesting

places rather than just giving facts and figures. We hope you learn about Korea in an entertaining way by reading this book and can visit these places for real some day. Korea doesn’t just have a rich history it is also well known for its progressive technology and futuristic architecture and design. Its IT, mobile, and semiconductor industries are famous around the world. Korea is a country where past traditions are interconnected with modern thinking. To continue its development, Korea needs bright and creative people. Our future will be shaped by our youth, who will go out into the world with extraordinary thinking and broad minds. This book is just a brief introduction to all Korea has to offer. We hope to see you here soon!

Invitation to Korea 14 15 17 Excited about traveling in Korea Korean is easier than it sounds Hello, Korea 22

CHAPTER 2. Experiencing Korea
Hangang River, heaven in Seoul 42 44 46 48 56 View of Seoul from Namsan Mountain NANTA!, a performance that really cooks Shopping in Korea 52 57 59

Insa-dong for tradition, Daehangno for young people Hahoe Village, discovering our ancestors’ wisdom Dancing along to talchum, the mask dance Barugongyang, way to find enlightenment Make your own mini homepage! 64

CHAPTER 3. The Passion of Koreans
Taekwondo, Korea’s traditional martial art Red Devils, Korea’s national pride Miracle on the Hangang 84 82 78

CHAPTER 4. World Heritage in Korea
Dolmen, the secret history of the Korean Peninsula 96 Jongmyo and palaces that trace Korea’s history back 600 years 99

Hanok: centuries-old, eco-friendly houses


The Korean Wave: internationally recognized movies and dramas 107 Kimchi, the nation’s favorite food 111 113 Hanbok, a harmony of lines, curves and colors

CHAPTER 5. Future of Korea
Parents’ devotion to their children 136 140 143 Challenges and opportunities in the modern world World famous Koreans: Nam June Paik, Sarah Chang, and Harold Hongju Koh


162 Facts about Korea Soul of Asia, Seoul Korean Style Study in Korea 88 122 150 History of Korea 24 68



Thumbs up! The best places to visit in Korea Seoul Tour Festivals 70 92 130 152


Gyeongju Tour Educational Tour

Transportations 168 / Subway Maps 172 / Accommodations 176 / Travel Information Center 180 / 1330 Korea Travel Phone 181 / Tourist Complaint Center 181 / Goodwill Guide 181 / Contact 182

Let’ go Korea with us! s

Im Jaehyun (Jay, Age. 19)
Jaehyun is studying neurobiology at Harvard. He plans to go to medical school in the future and become a doctor. He is Sanghyun‛s older brother, and he was in 5th grade when he moved to the States. During high school years, Jaehyun received the Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship. He involved himself in sports, music, and scientific research.

Alex (Age. 16)
Alex is from Vancouver, Canada and he wants to become an architect in the future. Alex is also a sophomore at Exeter and he is Sanghyun‛s best friend and roommate. He enjoys traveling very much and is excited about traveling in Korea.

Im Sanghyun (Steve, Age. 16)
Sanghyun is a sophomore in a high school in the U.S. He moved from Korea to the States in 2nd grade, and he grew up in Closter, New Jersey. Sanghyun plays tennis on the school team, and he is also involved in various arts programs as well. He has been selected to play in the New Hampshire all-state band and played parts in the play “Arcadia” and the musical “Cabaret.” Sanghyun also enjoys singing in the school choir.

Four Seasons of Korea

Photo by Jinho Jung flickr.com/photos/phploveme

Chapter 1

Welcome to Korea!

Hi !

I‛m Alex. Today I‛m starting out on a big trip. My room-

mate Sanghyun invited me to visit him and his family this summer, so I‛ll have a chance to see many new and old things in Korea. Korea has a 5000-year history, and it has recently become a leader in the production and marketing of cell phones, PDP TVs, semiconductors, and Internet services. It‛s looking like an awesome summer, and I hope you will come along.

Invitation to Korea
As I frantically stuffed socks and underwear into my bags, I had to shout at Sanghyun because he was just chilling out listening to music through his earphones.
“Sanghyun! Will you help me pack?” “What? Oh, sure.”

I’m from Canada, and I’m currently a sophomore in a high school in the U.S. Sanghyun quickly became one of my best friends after we met last year, so this year we signed up to be roommates. But there isn’t that much time left until our plane takes off. If he doesn’t help me pack right now, we might miss our flight.
“Sanghyun! Hurry!!!” “Take it easy, dude. I’ll help you.”

Sanghyun was done a long time ago. He just needed to pack his laptop, mp3, and passport. He lives in Korea so almost everything he needs is just waiting for him there. I, on the other hand, have to take everything I’ll need with me. I’m really into traveling and have wanted to visit Korea since I got to know Sanghyun. I’m lucky his family suggested he invite me this summer.

Excited about traveling in Korea
I’ll be in Korea in a few hours. This has been the longest flight in my life, but a comfortable one, thanks to the excellent in-flight service and entertainment on the plane. On my personal monitor, I watched a Korean movie, then a Hollywood film, played some games and caught some sleep listening to classical music. Sanghyun’s always bragging that Korea’s biggest airlines, Korean Air and Asiana Airlines, won this or that award from travel mags like Business Traveler and Global Traveler for great service. Now I can see why he’s so proud. Their service really is something special.
◀ AVOD (Audio and Video on Demand) service available on Korea’s major airlines

Welcom to Korea!


“Alex, you said it’s your first time in Korea, right?” “Yeah.” “Do you even know where Korea is?” “Sure. It’s east of China and south of Russia! … But, to tell the truth, I looked it up on a map just before I got my ticket.” “Yeah. North and South Korea make up the Korean Peninsula, which is on the eastern tip of Asia between China and Japan – in what is commonly called the Far East.” “Why are North and South Korea still divided when Panmunjeom Germany and many others have unified?”

Sanghyun gave me a quick summary of how Korea came to be divided into North and South. He told me that Korea was liberated from Japanese rule in 1945, and Soviet Russia and the U.S. divided the peninsula into two at the 38th parallel; Russia took control of
Panmunjeom is located approximately 50km to the north of Seoul. It is where the Korean War armistice agreement was signed of July 27, 1953. The 800m- diameter circle around Panmunjeom marks the JSA (Joint Security Area) and is the only area occupied by both UN and North Korean forces.

the North and the U.S. the South. The Korean War started in 1950, and the demarcation zone (DMZ) marked out at the time the two sides reached a truce in 1953 became the current North-South border.
“Alex, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind about Korea?” “Well, I think about galbi, bulgogi, kimchi, and cell phones.” “Cool. Korean food is the first thing I have on my mind now, too. I’ll show you a lot of great places to eat, and in Korea, the kimchi and other side dishes come with the meal.”


Let’s go Korea!

Korean is easier than it sounds
As we got close to Incheon, I realized that I didn’t know how to say anything in Korean. So I decided to learn a few phrases before we got out of the airport.
“Sanghyun, will you teach me a few phrases?” “I was going to teach you little by little after we got there.” “I just want to know a few basic ones.” “Okay. ‘Thank you’ is ‘gam-sa-ham-ni-da’. ‘Gam’ and ‘ham’ rhyme with ‘com’ like in dot com. ‘Hello’ is ‘annyeong-ha-se-yo.’ ‘An-nyeong’ can also be ‘goodbye’ when talking to a friend. Think of it like saying ‘ah’ for the doctor + ‘n’ + ‘young.’ It’s easy: ‘Alex, an-nyeong!’” Sanghyun waved bye. “Then how do you say ‘great’?” “That’s easy: ‘jjang,’ but really stress the ‘j.’”

Korea lies between ▲ Japan and China

Welcom to Korea!


Sejong the Great (1397~1450)
the government. During his reign, major progress was made in virtually every field: agriculture, literature, medicine, printing, science. King Sejong’s greatest accomplishment, however, is the creation of Hangeul, the Korean alphabet. Aware that the general public needed a writing system besides the complicated system of writing in Chinese characters, the king and his Hall of Worthies devised a simple alphabet that could be easily learned. This was not the only important invention of his reign: a new calendar; a pluviometer, an instrument to measure rainfall; an anemo-scope, an instrument to measure wind speed and direction; sun dials, water clocks; models and instruments to study heavenly bodies; astronomy charts; atlases; new printing types—the list goes on and on. In these ways and many others, King Sejong strengthened and brought to the nation peace and cultural vitality, which is more than anyone could ask of even a king. He helped shape Korean society and culture into what they are today, and his influence on politics, ethics, history, music, literature, and the sciences, and especially the language, is still felt. He died on the 17th of the Second Moon in 1450, after having ruled the nation for 32 years of its most glorious years.

Only one king in Korean history has ever been deemed worthy enough to have been accorded the title “the Great.” He was the fourth king of the Joseon Dynasty, King Sejong, who is universally regarded as the wisest and most gifted ruler in Korean history. The long list of accomplishments during his reign is astonishing, to say the least, and probably no other time in Korean history was quite so creative and productive. As a child, Sejong was a quiet, studious boy who showed an avid love of learning. Sejong was a practical person, who took a keen interest in the day-to-day affairs of government, and sought ways to improve the lives of his citizens. He reformed the tax system and constantly tried to refine


Let’s go Korea!

Learning Hangeul (Korean Language)
Many languages are written with foreign alphabets: English uses Roman letters, Mongolian uses Cyrillic. Korean used to use only Chinese characters. But in the 15th century a Korean king ordered creation of a new alphabet to make it easier to read and write Korean words. Great King Sejong worked with courts scholars to make Hangeul, the Korean alphabet. The vowels are drawn from three shapes “ㅡ” for land, “ㅣ” for man, and “ · ” for sky. The consonants’ shapes reflect the relevant position of the tongue, lips and teeth. The alphabet is so easy, most people master it within a few hours.

- Summary of the Romanization System (1) Vowels are transcribed as follows:
simple vowels diphthongs

ㅏ ㅓ ㅗ ㅜ ㅡ ㅣ ㅐ ㅔ ㅚ ㅟ
a eo o u eu i ae e oe wi

ㅑ ㅕ ㅛ ㅠ ㅒ ㅖ ㅘ ㅙ ㅝ ㅞ ㅢ
ya yeo yo yu yae ye wa wae wo we ui

Note 1 : ㅢ》 transcribed as ui, even when pronounced as 《 is 《ㅣ》 . Note 2 : Long vowels are not reflected in Romanization

(2) Consonants are transcribed as follows:
plosives (stops) affricates fricatives nasals liquids

ㄱ ㄲ ㅋ ㄷ ㄸ ㅌ ㅂ ㅃ ㅍ
g,k kk k d,t tt t b,p pp p

ㅈ ㅉ ㅊ
j jj ch

ㅅ ㅆ ㅎ
s ss h

ㄴ ㅁ ㅇ
n m ng


Note 1 : The sounds ㄱ,ㄷ, and ㅂ are transcribed respectively as g, d, and b when they appear before a vowel. They are transcribed as k, t, and p when followed by another consonant or form the final sound of a word. (They are Romanized as pronunciation in [ ].) e.g 구미 Gumi 옥천 Okcheon 월곶[월곧]Wolgot 영동 Yeongdong 합덕 Hapdeok 벗꽃[벋꼳]Beotkkot 백암 Baegam 호법 Hobeop 한밭[한받]Hanbat

Note 2 : ㄹ is transcribed as r when followed by a vowel, and as l when followed by a consonant or when appearing at the end of a word. ㄹㄹ (e.g 울릉) is transcribed as ll. e.g 구리 Guri 임실 Imsil 설악 Seorak 울릉 Ulleung 칠곡 Chilgok 대관령[대괄령] Daegwallyeong

Welcom to Korea!


During the school year I’d hear Sanghyun talking on the phone with his parents in Korean and thought I’d never be able to learn the language. But when Sanghyun taught me syllable by syllable, it really wasn’t that hard. In a few minutes, I was able to greet people and ask simple questions.
“Alex, if you think those words are easy, try reading Korean. That’s the easiest part.” “No way.” “The Korean alphabet is called Hangeul. There are 14 consonants and 10 vowels, and you just need to know which English sound corresponds to the Korean letters.”

Sanghyun wrote some Korean letters on a paper. This ‘ㄱ’ is called ‘giyeok.’ When it’s at the beginning of a syllable, it’s a hard ‘g,’ but at the end it’s a ‘k.’ The name of each of our letters show how they are pronounced at the front and end of a syllable. ‘ㄴ’ is ‘nieun,’ and ‘ㅅ’ is ‘siot.’
“That’s really cool!”
▼ Hunminjeongeum

“Yeah, well ‘siot’ can be ‘s’ or ‘sh’ at the front of a syllable. And there’s no ‘z’ in Korean, but our vowels rock with sounds English doesn’t have and all are always pronounced the same: ‘유’ is ‘yu.’ Think about ‘u’: it is different in ‘usual,’ ‘umbrella’ and ‘until.’ But ‘유’ stays ‘yu.’ 15th century linguists developed our alphabet. And did such a good job that Korea has the highest lit-


Let’s go Korea!

eracy rate in the world. … Have you heard of the King Sejong Literacy Prize?” “No.” “It’s a prize UNESCO awards to an individual or organization that makes a big contribution to fighting illiteracy.” “But who’s King Sejong?” “He was the Korean king who created the first version of Hangeul.” “Hangeul 1.0” “Exactly! He and the scholars in his court researched writing systems from around the world and the way Korean sounds are made and created a new alphabet, so people could read and write our language easily. Before that, only the wealthy could afford to teach the Chinese characters used to write Korean.” “Wow, trying to make his subjects smarter and homework easier. Sounds like one cool king.”

Sanghyun taught me some more letters, and it was fun sounding out English words used in Korean like ‘뉴스.’ Got it? … nyuseu, a.k.a. ‘news.’ ‘으’ written ‘eu’ is a Korean vowel English doesn’t have. But if you ever set your hand down in something sticky at a cheap diner, ‘eu’ is likely the sound you made through clenched teeth. Packing some phrases and able to read most of the letters, I was much more confident and excited about my upcoming journey.

Incheon International Airport

Hello, Korea
Incheon International Airport was outstanding. English signs everywhere, so I didn’t have any trouble navigating through the spacious airport. Everything was really clean and well maintained. Speaking from all my 16 years of traveling, I thought it was the most convenient and cleanest airport I’ve ever seen. Sanghyun and I took a bus called an ‘airport limousine.’ It had business-class seats and dropped us very close to his house where his mom met us. We could have taken the subway directly from the airport, but I wanted to see the city. I like Korea already. From the signs in the airport to the public transportation system, everything has been neat and convenient. The airport is on a manmade island, so shortly after the bus picked us up, we were heading across a long bridge built over the ocean. I didn’t really feel like I was in an Asian country until I saw the broad tidal flats and rolling mountains in the distance. About thirty minutes later, a river and many bridges came into view.
“Sanghyun, that’s the Hangang River, right? There are so many bridges!” “Yup. There are 23 bridges on the Hangang. It flows right through the middle of Seoul and into the Yellow Sea on the west coast. Paris has the Left and Right banks. Seoul has Gangnam (river south) and

Incheon International Airport is one of the biggest airports in East Asia. 7.8 billion dollars went into the construction of the airport, which opened in March 2001. Annually, 170,000 planes come and go from the airport, ferrying 27,000,000 people and 1.7 million tons of freight. In June 2008, the construction of a third runway and a new terminal building was completed. Incheon International Airport will increase its annual flight-handling number to 410,000 and aims to become one of the five biggest airports in the world by 2010.


Let’s go Korea!

Gangbuk (river north). The old part of the city with the palaces and big temples is in Gangbuk. My family lives in Gangnam. That’s the more modern part of Seoul.” “Seoul is the capital, right?” “Yes, and Korea’s biggest and most populated city. It’s like our D.C., New York and Hollywood all in one place, and it also hosted the 1988 Summer Olympics and 2002 World Cup. Look! You can see the World Cup Stadium over there. It seems like every time I come back, Seoul is more developed. It’s become one of the major cities in the world.”
▲ Incheon International Airport Duty Free Shop

Dusk fell, and the lights on the bridge and surrounding buildings started coming on. The lights illuminating the bridge and their reflection on the water were especially beautiful. I wanted to hop off and start exploring Seoul right away but decided against it. There are so many things to do tomorrow, and I’d better get some sleep.
Incheon International Airport ▼

Welcom to Korea!


visual Information
Facts about Korea
• Country Name: Republic of Korea • Capital City: Seoul (10.1 million) • National flag: Taegeukgi • National flower: Mugunghwa (Rose of Sharon) • Currency: won (₩) • Language: Korean (Written form: Hangeul) • Location: Strategically located at the crossroads of Northeast Asia. Korea lies between Japan, the Russian Far East and China. • Territory: 223,098㎢ (South Korea: 99,678㎢) • Highest mountains: Baekdusan 2744m, Hallasan 1950m • Longest rivers: Amnokgang 790km, Nakdonggang 521.5km, Dumangang 521km, Hangang 481.7km • Major cities: Seoul (10.1 million), Busan (3.5 million), Incheon (2.6 million), Daegu (2.5 million), Daejeon (1.5 million), Gwangju (1.4 million), Ulsan (1.1 million) • Climate: Temperate with four distinct seasons • Population: 48.46 million (2007) • Foreign residents: 1.1 million • Political System: Democracy with president elected to a single 5-year term by direct popular vote. Division of power among the executive, legislature (unicameral National Assembly) and judiciary • Gross Domestic Product: $969.9 billion (2007) • Per Capita GNI: $20,045 (2007) • Major Industrial Products: Semiconductors, automobiles, ships, consumer electronics, mobile telecommunication equipments, steel and chemicals

Visit korea.net, the official website of the Korean Government whenever you want to know about Korea. You can find • News about Korea • Enjoyable places and features • An extensive directory of websites related to Korea. Korea.net provides you with the most exciting and timely information about Korea.

Travel Information

Thumbs up! The best places to visit in Korea
There are tons of places for teenagers to enjoy in Korea! Amusement parks, ski resorts, national parks, Jeju Island, and so on. Plan a visit that you will never forget! Don’t worry even if you don’t have time to leave Seoul, there are many great shopping areas to visit. Why not go to Lotte World and COEX? If you have time, drop by Heyri in Paju, Seoul Land in Gwacheon, or Everland in Yongin. If you are a big fan of sports, visit Gangwon-do Province and enjoy rafting in the summer and skiing in the winter. If you get a chance to visit Jeju, it would be a great opportunity to look at marine life from a submarine and to try go-carting, horse riding, and hiking.

● ● ● ● ● ●

Seasonal Tour - Winter Sports Seasonal Tour - Rafting Special Tour - Jeju Island Entertainment Theme Park COEX Heyri Art Village

Seasonal Tour 1

Winter Sports: Gangwon-do Province is where Korea’s winter season
begins and where it lasts the longest, and therefore the majority of Korea’s winter resorts are located in this province. There are now a total of eight winter resorts in Gangwon-do. Each resort is designed under a different theme, and appeals to skiers and snowboarders for various reasons. Let’s take a look at what Gangwon-do has to offer, and learn about the various resorts and slopes we can enjoy this winter.

Winter Sonata’s Home Ground, Yongpyong Resort
8 www.yongpyong.co.kr ☎ +82-33-335-5757 P 130 Yongsan-ri Daegwallyeong-myeon Pyeongchang-gun Gangwon-do

Water Theme Park with Daemyung Vivaldi Park
8 www.daemyungresort.com/vp ☎ +82-1588-4888 P Seo-myeon Hongcheon-gun Gangwon-do

Snowboarder’s Heaven, Phoenix Park
8 www.phoenixpark.co.kr ☎ +82-33-333-6000 P 1095 Myeonon-ri Bongpyeong-myeon Pyeongchang-gun Gangwon-do

Fun for all at Sungwoo Resort
8 www.hdsungwoo.co.kr ☎ +82-33-340-3000 P 204 Duwon-ri Dunnae-myeon Hoengseong-gun Gangwon-do

Only One Hour from Seoul, Gangchon Resort
8 www.gangchonresort.co.kr ☎ +82-33-260-2000 P 29-1 Baekyang-ri Namsan-myeon Chuncheon-si Gangwon-do

Ski Train Tour to Hansol Oak Valley Snow Park
8 www.oakvalley.co.kr ☎ +82-33-730-3500 P 1016 Wolsong-ri Jijeong-myeon Wonju-si Gangwon-do

Enjoy the Casino & Ski at Kangwon Land High 1
8 www.high1.co.kr/eng ☎ +82-2-1588-7789 P San 1-17, Gohan-ri, Gohan-eup, Jeongseon-gun, Gangwon-do

Seasonal Tour 2

Rafting is a challenging recreational activity. Gangwon-do is a place where many people visit for this exciting adventure. Rafting is usually done on white water to thrill and excite the passengers. Gangwon-do is a place where you can enjoy rafting in a safe environment. Experience rafting in the summer for more fun, and enjoy the view during the spring and the fall. Come and explore beautiful Korea.


Donggang River
The Donggang River is 72km long and runs across Gangwon-do. The River has an abundant volume of water, which provides perfect conditions for rafting. The Donggang is well known for its beautiful scenic views and its well preserved ecosystems. Discover the Donggang today!
☎ +82-33-370-2091 8 www.ywtour.com/eng

Hantangang River in Cheolwon
The Hantangang River is located in Gangwon-do, Cheolwon-gun, about an hour away from Seoul. The Hantangang is a great place to go for rafting with amazing views of little falls and valleys. If you want excitement, why not visit the Hantangang?
☎ +82-33-450-5365 8 www.greengangwon.com

Injae Naerincheon River
Originating from Odaesan Mountain, the Naerincheon River winds its way into the Soyanggang River. Known for the clarity of its water, the Naerincheon is a fascinating place for various types of leisure sports including rafting, paragliding, mountain biking, and bungee jumping.
☎ +82-33-249-2706 8 www.greengangwon.com

Pyeongchang Geumdang Valley
The Geumdang Valley is located in Gangwon-do, Pyeongchang-gun. Enjoy rafting without rowing due to the rivers rapidly flowing water. Rafting is available in small and medium sized boats. Enjoy great views of Geumdangsan Mountain.
☎ +82-33-332-5533 8 www.greengangwon.com

Gyeonghogang River in Sancheong
The Gyeonghogang River, located in Gyeongsangnam-do, Sancheong-gun, is one of Korea’s most beautiful areas. The outstanding volume of clear water makes the Gyeonghogang a thrill of a life time and a perfect get away. Nearby attractions such as Jirisan National Park, Jungsalli Valley, and Daewon Valley are located within a 30-minute drive.
☎ +82-55-970-6000 8 tour.sancheong.ne.kr

Special Tour - Jeju Island


Within an hour’s flight from Seoul, Busan or Daegu, travelers in Korea can reach a land of a completely different character. Recognized as the best-preserved area in the nation, Jeju Island is Korea’s only island province. The island is Korea’s most popular honeymoon destination. Known as “Little Hawaii” for its volcanic landscape, picturesque subtropical scenery, sandy beaches, waterfalls and hiking trails, it is one of the world’s top ten tourist attractions with over four million visitors a year. The blue sea, Mount Hallasan, Seongsan Sunrise Peak, Dragon Head Beach, Cheonjiyeon Falls, paragliding, Horseback riding. Come to green and tropical Jeju Island, when you just want to get away from it all.
8 www.jejutour.go.kr

P Jeju Special Self-Governing Province

☎ +82-64-710-2114

Horseback Riding
The fantastic island, Jeju, where green atmosphere is all around. Among all other attractions, Jeju is best known for its small horses. Come and run on the grassland along with the Mother Nature on horseback. The panoramic view and refreshing breeze you can feel upon hills of Mount Halla. It’s where you can take a rest looking down the green grassland and the blue sea.

Kart Racing
Go-karting or mini formula racing is an easy to learn motor sport. Because go-karting doesn’t require a driver’s license, young and old are able to race! The cars and race tracks are safely designed.

ATV Experience
ATV (All Terrain Vehicle), or quad bikes, are able to run on any road no matter how bumpy or rugged. The ATV is a trouble-free vehicle that can easily run on all terrains, even hills! Quad biking is much more exciting than any other amusement ride. Try quad biking today and experience excitement that you will never forget.

Submarine Tour
Jeju, a designated blue belt area, has amazing maritime scenery. Take pleasure from seabed exploration where you can find famous damselfish and variety of coral reefs!

Hiking Jeju
Jeju has excellent hiking, with flat, esay pathways and more adventurous courses. Also, stop by a beach where you can bask in the sunshine.

Scuba Diving
Jeju is known for its clear pure water. Many divers visit Jeju especially in spring and autumn, when underwater conditions are perfect for scuba diving. Good scuba diving areas include the coast of Seoguipo, Chagui-do, and U-do.

Entertainment Theme Park
Lotte World
Lotte World is the perfect spot for entertainment and sightseeing. It is a theme park filled with thrilling rides, an ice rink, different kinds of parades as well as a folk museum, a lake, and much more. Lotte World is divided into an ‘Adventure’ theme once you are inside the building, and outside is a ‘Magic Island’ theme next to Seokchonhosu Lake. ☎ +82-2-411-2000, 4000 8 www.lotteworld.com

Seoul Land
Seoul Land is Korea’s first theme park, with beautiful scenery surrounded by Mt. Cheonggyesan. Seoul Land has an area called ‘World Square’ where one can glimpse traditional architecture and folk items from all over the world. You can view traditional Korea at Samchulli Hill, a western frontier at Model Land, and Fantasy Land. Seoul Land is a popular destination as it also contains Seoul Grand Park, Forest Bath Resort, the National Modern Art Center and other great attractions nearby. ☎ +82-2-504-0011~6 8 www.seoulland.co.kr

Located in Yongin, Everland is a large theme park boasting a zoo, snow sledding, and botanical garden. The park also contains three distinct themes which are Festival World, Caribbean Bay, and Speedway. Festival World includes Global Fair, American Adventure, Magic Land, European Adventure, and Equatorial Adventure, each created with is own unique style. Caribbean Bay is the very first water park in Korea. The park is well laid out with convenient walkways, which can accommodate about 35,000 spectators. Everland also features the Glen Ross Golf Club, Automobile Museum, Sportspark, and Hoam Art Gallery. ☎ +82-31-20-5000 8 www.everland.com

COEX is prominent landmark in Seoul. Located in the central business area, COEX is a destination for business, shopping, entertainment, and more. With a world-class convention and exhibition center, Asia’s largest underground shopping Mall, restaurants and entertainment facilities, COEX is a great place to go in Seoul.
8 www.coex.co.kr ☎ +82-2-6000-0114 P COEX, World Trade Center Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul

What can you do at COEX? You can
Visit a trade show or exhibition Shop for the latest fashions in COEX Mall Explore the undersea world at COEX Aquarium See a movie on one of 17 screens at MEGABOX Cinema Eat great Korean or International food at one of the over 200 restaurants in our complex Shop for books at Bandi & Luni’s, a giant bookstore Play the latest video games at our video game arcade Find luxury and namebrand goods at Hyundai Department store Buy top-quality gifts and souvenirs at COEX Duty-Free Shop Watch live performances at COEX Art Hall Exercise or enjoy the sauna at a fitness center

And more!

Heyri Art Village
Heyri is an art village that communicates culture through a variety of genres. At first, this village was designed as a ‘book village’ linked to Paju Publishing Town in 1997. But in the process of building the project, lots of artists in various cultural fields joined it. And the concept of the village was expanded to ‘cultural art village.’ Now over 370 members: writers, artists, directors, architects, and musicians are building their artistic spaces, houses, work rooms, museums, galleries.

There are more than thirty small or medium-sized museums in Heyri with subjects such as international folk instruments, toys, butterflies, magazines, traditional foods, Buddhist art, figure paintings, stamps, films, film posters, etc.

Art Galleries
There are six galleries in Heyri: The Gallery Cheongam, Nam-Kyu Lee’s Memorial Hall, the KwangYoung Gallery, BaekSoonsil Gallery, the Korean Ceramics Museum, and the Vietnam Museum.

Music Halls
There will be numerous small concert halls and recital studios for chamber music. Classical music cafes and jazz cafes will also feature high standard concerts throughout the year. Now Heyri has the Korea Music Hall, VR Concert Hall, and the Camerata Music Hall.

Art Shops
Around one hundred art shops and antique shops will keep articles of contemporary artists and antiques in stock to sell and exhibit. Yu-Sook Park’s Gallery, KAIS Gallery, Sumi Gallery, The Gallery Focus, and Jin Ad are some of the locations with shops.

8 www.heyri.net ☎ +82-31-946-8551 P Heyri Tanheon-myeon Paju-si Gyeongi-do

Chapter 2

Experiencing Korea

Hi !

This is Sanghyun. My home country has a lot of things to

do and see. Korea has internationally renowned theater, such as “Nanta,” “Jump” and B-boy shows, and traditional performances like mask dances that our hundreds of years old and percussion bands that literally make heads spin. I hope that my friend Alex can experience some of the best that Korea has to offer during his stay.

Hangang River, heaven in Seoul
I knocked on Alex’s door to say good morning. He was already awake and looking out at his first morning in Korea.
“Did you sleep well, Alex? It’s a new bed. I hope it was okay.” “I had no trouble falling asleep. The bed was great. But because of jetlag, I was dead tired by 11 and wide awake at dawn. Were you able to sleep normally?” “Sure, I cross the Pacific once or twice a year. I know how to deal with jetlag. Ready to go?” “Of course!”

Alex seems to be in a really good mood. I’m relieved that he’s in a better condition than I thought he might be in. He’s used to traveling a lot. Maybe that’s why
▼ Hangang River Citizen’s Park

he’s not that bothered by jetlag.


Let’s go Korea!

◀ Water Sports on the Hangang River

“Sanghyun, where are we going first?” “I want to show you the river.”

For Alex’s first full day in Korea, I decided to show him Seoul’s two biggest natural landmarks: the Hangang River and Namsan Mountain. I have many fond memories of both places. When I was little I used to go there a lot with my family for picnics or to play soccer.
“Wow, there are a lot of people here already!” “The Hangang is a great place to come any time of the day. In the morning, lots of people come here to exercise. They can jog, rollerblade, bike, or play basketball or soccer.” “It’s great. So much open space in a huge city.” “And when it gets really hot during the summer, the pools open, so you can cool off in them. In the fall, there are big fireworks shows at night, and all year, you can take inexpensive river cruises, day and night.”
The Hangang is the river with the largest basin area in Korea, and it flows for 481.7km across the middle of the Korean Peninsula. Currently 23 bridges span the Hangang, along its banks are 12 parks and various facilities for recreation and sports.

Hangang River

Experiencing Korea


Namsan Mountain

“It’s really awesome that a super busy city like Seoul has a place where everyone can come and relax.”

I think Alex really likes the Hangang. It’s too bad that we didn’t bring a basketball. We could have got a game going. Next time, we’ll definitely bring a ball and play a pickup game with other people.
Namsan Mountain became important after King Taejo, the first king of the Joseon Dynasty, selected Hanyang (present day Seoul) to be the capital city. Namsan was originally called ‘Ingyeongsan Mountain’ but its location to the south of the royal palace gave it its present name. Namsan Mountain rises 262m above sea level, and it is loved by Seoul citizens as a place of respite. Namsan has a botanical garden, a library, and the N Seoul Tower stands tall at the top of the mountain.

View of Seoul from Namsan Mountain
We’re in the cable car that takes us up Namsan. Alex is amazed that Seoul has a big river like the Hangang and mountains scattered around the city. Now that I think of it, not too many cities have both a large river and mountains inside its limits. “What a view!”
“It’s great, isn’t it? I’m glad we decided to take the

▲ Seoul Millenium Time Capsule Plaza at Namsangol Hanok Village

cable car instead of walking up. There aren’t too many places where you can get a view of Seoul like this.” “I’m so glad we came here. I like the fresh breeze!” “Yeah, it feels so cool up here on the mountain. It’s another great place to escape from the summer heat! Namsan has a lot of evergreens, cherry and maple trees, so every season it looks beautiful. From the top of the mountain you can enjoy a view of Seoul spread around you in every direction.”

We walked up to the base of N Tower to be able to see across the river.
“Why are all those locks on the fence?” “Couples leave them here to show they will always be together.” “What if they break up?”

N Seoul Tower ▶


“They get a new date and new lock and hike back up.” “Spoken like a man of experience. How many of these are yours?” “Yeah, right. I never had much time to date.”

Samulnori is a percussion ensemble of four different instruments: kkwaenggwari (small metal gong), jing (large metal gong), janggu (hourglass-shaped drum), and buk (barrel drum). Samulnori started as a band of farm music performers and has become widely known nationally and internationally.

I haven’t been up here since I was in elementary school. Coming back has made me realize what a valuable resource Namsan is for the city and its people. They come here to get exercise, meditate, or even just to breathe some fresh mountain air. A busy city like Seoul is really lucky to have natural recreation spots like the Hangang and Namsan.

Nanta!, a performance that really cooks
As we looked down at the city spread out before us, we both took a big breath as if we were getting ready
▼ NANTA performance

to plunge into Seoul.


Let’s go Korea!

“Where are we going now, Sanghyun?” “My brother got us tickets to Nanta!” “What’s that?” “It’s a nonverbal performance. Mainly cooks pounding out very funny and exciting rhythms. It comes form samulnori, the traditional percussion band I was telling you about. People of all ages and nationalities enjoy this show. It’s easy to understand the plot and humor because the beat and facial expressions reveal the moods so well.” “Isn’t that the Korean show on Broadway? I thought it was called ‘Cookin’.” “Yeah. We talked about going before. It’s the first Asian performance to have its own theater on Broadway.” “I’m glad I get to see it on stage in Korea!” “It’s been a big hit here for around 10 years. There are even two theaters in Korea that are all ‘Nanta,’ all the time.” “I can’t wait to see it.”


When we arrived at the theater after taking the bus and subway, Jaehyun, my brother, was already there, waiting for us. BTW, in Seoul, you can use the same metro card to pay for the bus, subway and taxis. And transfers are free for public transportation if you get to the next bus or subway before too long.
“Sanghyun! Over here! Let’s hurry inside. The performance is about to begin.”

‘Nanta’ in Korean means to ‘beat crazily.’ NANTA is a nonverbal performance that uses the rhythm and beats of samulnori to comically dramatize different things that can happen in a kitchen. NANTA made its international debut in 1999 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where it received the best performance award. It has been staged in Japan, Germany, U.S., Russia, China, Netherlands and other countries. In 2004, NANTA became the first Asian program to have a long-term performance on Broadway. It ran for 449 shows.

Experiencing Korea


Insa-dong for tradition, Daehangno for young people
Alex wouldn’t settle down after the performance. He was half walking and half bobbing up and down as if he were still listening to Nanta.
“That was a lot of fun, wasn’t it? I’m so glad I saw it again.” “Yeah. That was the most fun I’ve had in any performance. I want to see some more Korean shows.” “Hmm. Hyeong, where do you think we could go?” “Tomorrow we can go to Hahoe Village in Andong. Many traditional performing arts are well preserved there. We could see a mask dance.” “Can we go now? I really want to see it.” “Dude, Andong is three hours by bus. Let’s see some more of Seoul today and go there tomorrow.”

Insa-dong is a street located in the heart of Seoul and is a place where Korea’s traditions are preserved and artifacts are sold and traded. Insa-dong is home to many art galleries, craft stores, traditional teashops, traditional restaurants, and cafes. No cars are allowed to enter Insa-dong every Sunday from 10 am to 10 pm, making Insa-dong further visitor-friendly. You can see various street performances and special exhibits on Sundays.


Let’s go Korea!

Insa-dong street ▲

“Then where are we going now?” “Hyeong, how about Insa-dong?” “Sanghyun, you told me your brother’s name was Jaehyun. Why do you keep calling him Hyeong. Is it short for Jaehyun?” “No, Hyeong means ‘older brother.’ It’s from Confucianism. It’s a way to show respect for those who came before us. You’ll hear many titles like ajumma (aunt), halabeoji (grandfather). It can get really defined. Even with twins, the second one out calls the first ‘hyeong’ all his life.” “But Jaehyun just calls you Sanghyun.” “Younger brothers and sisters usually don’t get any respect.” “Oh, so Canada and Korea aren’t that different after all.” Daehangno

We headed to Insa-dong, an area between the main palace and Jongno, the biggest street of old Seoul. It has many shops and vendors that sell antiques and traditional items. There are also many galleries, artisans, and teashops there. It’s like a movie set for a
Running from Jongno 5-ga to Hyehwa-dong Roundabout, Daehangno is centered around Marronnier Park. Daehangno is a street full of numerous dance, play, and musical theaters, art organizations, and street performers.

Korean bazaar. In fact, you’ll sometimes see professional film crews shooting here and always see many local and foreign tourists walking around with cameras. Alex is becoming more and more fascinated with Korean culture. He talked excitedly about each item that he saw in Insa-dong. He seemed especially interested in fans. He bought two already. We were all tired from walking all around Insa-dong, so we decided to break for a meal. We shared bibimbap, pajeon, and sun-


Let’s go Korea!

dubujjigae. Alex really liked the pajeon which had a lot of seafood in it. With our bellies full, we got on the bus and headed for Daehangno. Now that we’ve seen Insa-dong, Jaehyun (a.k.a Hyeong) suggested that we check out a place so geared to students its name means “University Street.”
“Alex, many artistic groups, small theaters, and galleries are on and around Daehangno. So there are lots of street performances each day.” “Jaehyun, do you think we have enough time to see a play?” “Maybe, I’ll check if any are in English. There are also lots of other things to see outdoors. Little concerts are always being staged around Daehangno.”
Marronier Park, Daehangno ▼

Experiencing Korea


When we arrived at Marronnier Park, many people were handing out brochures for different plays. Jaehyun explained that often the performers and even the producers of small plays come out and advertise their shows. We saw actors in funny costumes and artists drawing some pretty good caricatures before we headed off.

Shopping in Korea
I can’t believe that after all the things we’ve done today and the places we’ve been to, I’m here shopping for clothes. Even after strolling around Daehang▼ Shopping center entrance at Dongdaemun

no, Alex didn’t want to go home. Jaehyun suggested


Let’s go Korea!

that we go to one of the wholesale markets that stay open all night. So here I am at Dongdaemun, walking through a bustling street full of other teenagers looking for cheap, hip clothes. I hear some loud music and people cheering up ahead, so I’m going to go check it out.
“Wow, what’s that?” “Some of the big clothing stores in Dongdaemun have small stages near their entrances, where bands, dancers, or singers come to show off their skills. These mini-concerts provide entertainment for the people walking by and also attract customers.” “Those guys are wild. How can they come up with those moves?” B-boy
B-boys are professional breakdancers who are becoming more and more recognized throughout the world. Korean B-boys have won the four biggest B-boy battle awards and are acclaimed as the world’s best.

Experiencing Korea


B-boy ▲

“Korean B-boys are famous for having powerful, creative moves. Even though breakdancing hasn’t been around in Korea for long, Korean guys are already dominating the stage at international competitions.” “They’re really good! How many times is he going to spin on his head like that? Do they usually perform in places like this?” “B-boys like to perform outdoors just for practice and to show off their skills. This most likely won’t be your last time seeing a performance like this in Korea. Let’s go in one of the complexes.”

Alex is really enjoying himself. He’s already been to every floor and every booth in a shopping town, and he’s headed to a different building now.
“I think Alex would prefer Myeong-dong.” “Why?” “It has some big world brands, department stores, and jewelry shops. And there’s more to do than just shop. There are coffee shops, restaurants, noraebangs (that’s like Korean karaoke), movie theaters. Most foreigners are struck by Myeong-dong’s energy. It’s a very popular destination.” “Then we should definitely check it out!”

I’m really glad that Alex is having a fun time in Korea. I’m also happy that I got to revisit many places that I haven’t been to in a long time.


Let’s go Korea!

Night scene at Myeong-dong ▲ Experiencing Korea 55

Hahoe Village in Andong

Hahoe Village, discovering our ancestors’ wisdom
We got up early to catch a bus to Andong. We ate breakfast in a hurry and left for the bus terminal. Alex must’ve been really tired from all the shopping yesterday. He fell asleep as soon as we took our seats on the bus. I tried to wake him, but I gave up

Hahoe Village is a clan village of the Pungsan Ryu family, and it preserves the traditional Korean way of life. Andong became famous when Queen Elizabeth II visited on her birthday in 1999. Hahoe Village, however, is more famous for the ‘Hahoe Byeolsin Gut’ and Hahoe masks. The Andong International Mask Dance Festival takes place in Hahoe Village every October, and Korea’s traditional mask dances and other performances are demonstrated.

because I was too tired myself. As soon as we arrived at Andong, we transferred to a local bus. Jaehyun had reserved a temple stay program at Bongjeongsa Temple for us, so we had to hurry. We first decided to take a look around the village. Jaehyun explained that it’s not exactly certain but the village probably dates all the way back to the Goryeo Dynasty, the kingdom that ruled the peninsula from 918~1392. The name Korea comes from Goryeo. By the time traders carried the kingdom’s name back to Europe, it had passed through so many languages that it came out ‘Korea’ on English tongues. And the name ‘Hahoe’ comes from the way the river makes an ‘S’ shape as it curves around the village. The village became really famous in 1999 when Queen Elizabeth II visited it. There were lots of small and big straw-roofed houses

and huge clay tile-roofed houses in Hahoe Village. Walking around Hahoe with its pristinely preserved houses made me feel like I was walking through an old architecture museum.

Dancing along to talchum, the mask dance
When we were about halfway around the village, we heard samulnori from afar and the sound gradually approached us. Jaehyun told us that the procession of mask dancers playing samulnori and letting the villagers know that there is about to be a show is called gilnori. We ran over to watch the procession. Musicians in traditional performing clothes led the way followed by mask dancers waving their arms to the music. Behind them, many Koreans and foreigners were also dancing and following the troupe of samulnori musicians and the mask dancers. We also joined in and followed them to the stage by the river.
“The shaman ritual of praying to the gods for prosperity and peace in the village is called a ‘gut.’ Hahoe Village has a unique version of this ritual called the ‘Hahoe

Queen Elizabeth Ⅱ visited ▲ Hahoe Village in April, 1999 on the occasion of her 73rd birthday

Panorama of Hahoe Village ▼

Experiencing Korea


Byeolsin Gut’.” “What makes it special?” “It’s unique because the performers wear masks called ‘tal’ and dance. This is to entertain the gods and appease their anger.” “They must be starting now. The crowd’s getting quiet”

A dancer wearing baekjeongtal entered the stage wielding an axe and a butcher’s knife and danced to the beat of samulnori. He laughed out loud and the
▼ A scene from Hahoe Byeolsin Gut

music stopped. He shouted a few things to the audience and resumed dancing to the music. From one side of the stage, a performer bearing a cow mask entered and started dancing an

Various masks of Korea, Tal ▲

antagonistic dance with the butcher. After this performance was over, dancers wearing jungtal, yangbantal, seonbital, and gaksital came out and danced a really fun number. Even though Alex couldn’t understand what the dancers were saying, he still thought it was comical. He took a lot of pictures. The masks all represent stock characters, a bride, a monk, etc., so Koreans familiar with the art know the character’s personalities before they speak.

Barugongyang, way to find enlightenment
After the performance was over, the audience was invited onto the stage to join the dancers for a final dance. Even though we wanted to stay a little longer

Experiencing Korea


and watch, we had to leave to get to Bongjeongsa Temple on time for the temple stay program.
“Alex, how was the mask dance?” “I thought it was great. Too bad I couldn’t understand the Korean though.” “I thought you said you learned Korean on the way over?” “Haha. I said I learned how to read Hangeul. That doesn’t mean I know the words I’m reading or hearing. Still, it was really fun! I liked dancing along to the music, and the masks looked cool.” “I’m glad you liked it. We have to head over the Bongjeongsa for the temple stay now.” “What’s that?” “Temple stay is an overnight program that lets you live like a monk and experience what it’s like to be in a place in harmony with nature and the teachings of Buddhism. Even people who aren’t Buddhist or even religious feel refreshed and uplifted by the environ▼ Barrel drum at Bongjeongsa Temple

ment and chamseon, a kind of meditation.” “Chamseon? Isn’t that the really boring kind where you just sit down and do nothing?” “Well, do you know any exciting kinds of meditation? The important thing is to keep an open mind and give it a shot.”

We left Hahoe Village and got on the local bus. When we arrived at Bongjeongsa, a monk came out and greeted us. He showed us to our room and around the temple. Bongjeongsa was built in 672, and Geungnakjeon, National Treasure No. 15, is part of the tem-


Let’s go Korea!

Temple Stay
Temple stay is a cultural-experience program designed to help Koreans and foreigners alike understand Korean Buddhism better by observing and practicing the life of a monk. Temple stay offers various unique experiences such as chamseon (Zen meditation), dado (tea ceremony), calligraphy, barugongyang (communal Buddhist meal service), and an introduction to temple culture. The program is open for everyone and lasts from 2-10 days.

Chamseon (Zen meditation)
All Buddhist traditions include some form of meditation, and chamseon is way to practice meditation in Mahayana (Great Vehicle) Buddhism. This meditation brings an end to the ‘monk mind’ that we all experience so that our minds become clear and we can return to our original self. There are many other terms for this return to the original self, including enlightenment, awakening, and realizing one’s Buddha nature.

108 Bows
The bow represents a desire to lower one’s self and serve others. The person bowing brings his or her forehead all the way to the floor and raises the palms skyward. The number 108 has to do with the sins Buddhism warns against and the possibility of one committing them in the past, present and future.

Barugongyang (Communal Buddhist meal service)
These meal offerings are the embodiment of equality, with everyone receiving the same meal and the same portions. In addition, these meal offerings are completely environmentally-friendly, since they are highly efficient and produce no waste or need for detergents. Thus, this ancient method has become a model for contemporary society.

Experiencing Korea


ple. You might have noticed ranking is really important in Korea: the lower the number, the more important its cultural significance. Geungnakjeon is the oldest existing wooden building in Korea. The monk also told us the story of how
▲ The main building of Bongjeongsa Temple

Bongjeongsa came to be. The legend is that a long, long time ago, a wise monk created a phoenix out of paper, and he built a temple where the bird landed. He named the temple Bongjeong, which means the place where a phoenix stayed. After the tour, we unpacked our stuff and learned the code of conduct in a temple and barugongyang, the mentality that we should maintain as we eat. It was time for barugongyang. Alex seemed a bit nervous about his first stay in a temple. He’d learned all this stuff a little earlier, but we all just watched the monks to make sure that we did everything right. During barugongyang, we ate in accordance with the signals given by a bamboo stick called a “jukbi.” There was no talking, no clattering of plates, or even the sound of chewing. It was a moment of absolute silence. The meal was entirely vegetarian. The food was filling and super fresh because the vegetables come from nearby gardens. But it wasn’t easy to clean off the plates with pickled radish and wash down the leftovers with rice-cooked water. Alex hesitated but carefully followed suit. We did the dishes with the other monks and brought our first barugongyang to its end.


Let’s go Korea!

“Jaehyun, why do we eat all the leftovers?” “That’s for us to realize the preciousness of the love and the effort that went into preparing the food and also to cleanse our minds like the food plates.” “That’s right,” the monk added, “Barugongyang isn’t just eating. It’s also a kind of training for everyone; a process for cultivating one’s mind.”

We rested for a bit as we chatted with the monk. Then it was time for praying before the Buddha. We had to do 108 bows with the monk. Not a simple bendyour-waist bow. I’m talking drop-to-your-knees-lieflat-on-the-floor-raise-palms-to heaven-lift yourselfup-with-your-toes-and-calves-and-repeat bows. At first it seemed doable but as we approached the final couple of dozen bows, we began to sweat, and our bodies felt heavy from fatigue. But by the time we were done with the 108th bow, my mind felt really tranquil and light. We participated in chamseon next.

Arirang-2 Satellite

It was a time of looking back at our lives and rediscovering our self-ego. Next morning, everyone woke up super early at 3 am for more praying in the temple, and then we went hiking with the monk. Hiking along the mountain trails,

The Arirang-2 satellite was invented in Korea and launched in July, 2006. Its actual name is The Korean Multi-purpose Satellite-2 (KOMPSAT-2). It has a high resolution camera so the satellite has the ability to record and recognize black and white images to a 1m pixel resolution and a 4m pixel resolution for color images in space.

relying only on the moon to light our path, was a fun and unique experience. In fact, for Sanghyun and Alex, everything that they did at Bongjeongsa from the barugongyang service to working on the farm and joining a tea ceremony was a new experience that they’ll never forget.

Make your own mini homepage!
After we left Bongjeongsa and said goodbye to our host monk, we stopped by a hot spring near the Nakdonggang River and got home near midnight. We were somewhat tired, but I turned on the computer to update my blog and Minihompy with the pictures that I took on the trip.
“Why do you upload so many pictures? It must take a long time.” “Well, Korea has really fast Internet connections, so it’s easy.”

I showed Alex how to upload photos onto my personal page, but he was more interested in the fast Internet connection with download speeds up to 100Mb per second.


Let’s go Korea!

“Korea has highly developed services and technology for the Internet, cell phones, DMB (digital multimedia broadcasting), and WiBro, so you can always access various services while on the move.” “I know. I’ve seen people watching TV on their cell phones in the subway. But what’s WiBro?” “WiBro is short for ‘wireless broadband.’ The service provides fast Internet access for people constantly on the move.”

Alex’s questions seemed to never stop. I told him that approximately 90% of the Korean population uses a cell phone, and that it’s really easy to access the Internet or watch TV through portable media players (PMP) or laptops. Before going to bed I helped Alex make his own Minihompy and upload some pictures. By the end of his trip, his personal page will be full of interesting pictures and fun posts, and I can introduce all my friends to his Minihompy through mine.
e-Sports (electronic sports) refers to competition among online gamers. They compete in a variety of game genres ranging from real-time strategy games such as Starcraft, first-person shooting games, sports games, and racing games. There are currently 12 pro-gaming organizations in Korea. There is also a video game arena in Yongsan i-park.

Experiencing Korea


Digital Life in Korea
Mobile DMB

Korea is a world leader in mobile and PDA technology. Korea is at the forefront of the development of mobile technology. Mobile services in Korea include mobile banking, gaming, traffic information, GPS, navigation system, and using a cell phone as a ticket or coupon.

DMB (Digital Multimedia Broadcasting) allows users to receive audio and video broadcasting while on the move. DMB was developed to replace the radio, but it has improved since then, and now it can not only trasmit audio but also DVD quality video.



WiBro is the wireless broadband Internet technology developed by Samsung Electronics and the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute. In October 2007, 3G wireless services in Korea became an international standard. Currently most users are from the metropolitan area, but the usage of the WiBro technology is expanding throughout Korea.

IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) uses high speed Internet to supply video and information onto the television. This allows those unfamiliar with the computer to home-shop, watch movies, do online banking, play online games, and listen to MP3 files on the television.


Let’s go Korea!



An amalgamation of the words “web” and “log”, blog refers to online posts describing one’s thoughts and feelings. Blogs allow sharing, interaction, and discussion among those keeping up with the fresh blog posts.

Minihompy is a Korean online community network service. Minihompy makes uploading pictures and videos simple, and the personal pages are extremely customizable.

Game Community

Mobile Community

Korea has a highly developed online gaming industry. Gamers review games and share gaming strategies with others through online and offline communities.

With the development of mobile communication, mobile communities are expanding. Based on the world’s leading mobile networks, Korea is starting mobile community services in fields such as marketing, religion, and trade.

Experiencing Korea


visual Information
Soul of Asia, Seoul
Seoul, the capital city of the Republic of Korea, is located in the central western part of the Korean Peninsula. The Hangang River and the Bugaksan Mountain Range add to the magnificent scenery of Seoul. Its geographical location also makes Seoul the political, economical, and cultural center of Korea.

◈ A city of the past and the present ◈
Seoul has previously been the capital city of Baekje and Joseon for 500 years each, and it holds a lot of heritage. It is a city in which skyscrapers and technology complexes coexist with ancient royal palaces and historical sites. Seoul is a city of ‘nature and people,’ the past and the present.

N Seoul Tower

◈ Korea’s leading brand ◈
Seoul’s strong international competitiveness in digital and knowledge industries makes it a business hub of East Asia. Seoul’s land area is only 0.6% of the total land area of Korea, but Seoul is responsible for 21% of the annual GDP and more than 50% of the financial market of Korea. High technology venture funds also invest heavily in Seoul. 27% of all the colleges in Korea are located in Seoul, which makes it easy to find quality job applicants. Korea also has relatively high labor productivity among the OECD countries. In addition, Seoul is home to many leaders in various fields such as politics, business, and the arts.

Gungdo (Archery)

Hi Seoul Festival

◈ The economic center of East Asia ◈
The Republic of Korea is located between China and Japan. Its geopolitical position has enabled Korea to act as a bridge for cultural exchanges and trade between its neighbors. In this regard, Seoul is an optimal location for doing business with China (the largest market in), and Japan (the world’s 2nd biggest economy). Northeast Asia is home to 25% of the world’s population and generates 22% of its GDP (forecasted to increase to 30% by 2020). Seoul boasts a wide array of transportation networks. Forty three cities with populations of a million or more are within a three-hour flight from Seoul (via Incheon International Airport). Incheon Port is also in close proximity to Seoul. When the interKorean railways (Seoul-Wonsan Line, Seoul-Sineuiju Line, Yangyang-Anbyeon Line) are restored, Seoul will be directly connected to Siberia and Mainland China by land. This will make Seoul an international hub of business and logistics.



Main street of Hongik University

Travel Information
Seoul Tour

Travel Information
Seoul Tour

Gyeongbokgung Palace
Gyeongbokgung Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.3), walk for 5 minutes. Gyeongbokgung Palace is arguably the most beautiful and remains the grandest of all the five palaces. The National Palace Museum of Korea is located south of Heungnyemun Gate, and the National Folk Museum is located east within Hyangwonjeong.
☎ 82-2-732-1931

Changdeokgung Palace and Huwon
Anguk Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.3), walk for 2 minutes. Chandeokgung served as the principal palace for many Joseon kings and remains the best preserved among the five royal Joseon palaces. The rear garden that was used as a place of rest by the kings boasts a gigantic tree that is over 300 years old, a small pond, and a pavilion.
☎ 82-2-762-9513

8 www.royalpalace.go.kr

8 www.cdg.go.kr

Changgyeonggung Palace
Hyehwa Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.4), walk for about 10 minutes. Located in the heart of Seoul, Changgyeonggung Palace was first built by the 4th ruler of the Joseon Dynasty, King Sejong (1418-1450), for his retiring father, King Taejong. It often served as residential quarters for queens and concubines.
☎ 82-2-762-4868~9

Deoksugung Palace
City Hall Subway Station (Subway Line No. 1), walk for about 2~5 minutes. Deoksugung Palace is famous for its elegant stone-wall road. It is also the only palace that sits alongside a series of Western style buildings that add to the uniqueness of the surrounding scenery.
☎ 82-2-771-9952

8 www.deoksugung.go.kr

8 cgg.cha.go.kr

Jongmyo Royal Shrine
Jongno 3(sam)-ga Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.1), walk 10 minutes. Jongmyo Shrine is the primary place of worship for the kings of the Joseon Dynasty. Jongmyo Shrine is registered as a World Cultural Heritage because the customs such as the memorial services and traditional music are very well preserved.
☎ 82-2-765-0195

Namsan Park
Seoul Station (Seoul Subway No.1) City Hall (Seoul Subway No.2) Mt. Namsan is a symbolic mountain located at the center of Seoul. At the top, there are various facilities such as Palgakjeong (an octagonal pavillion), N Seoul Tower, Maritime Aquarium, fountains, and Namsan Library.
☎ 82-2-753-2563

8 jm.cha.go.kr

8 parks.seoul.go.kr/namsan

Hangang River Citizen’s Park
Exit 2 or 3 of Yeouinaru Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.5). It is a huge area that is dedicated to the citizens, providing areas for sports and relaxation. You can see many people strolling or jogging along the paths, in-line skaters, bike riders, and soccer fields or basketball courts. The river cruise is especially good in the evening.
☎ 82-2-3780-0701

Namsan Hanok Village
Chungmuro Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.3), walk for 5 minutes. The houses belong to various social ranks of the society from peasant to king. The furniture in the houses are situated to help guests understand daily life in the past. You can also tea and refreshments. On the grounds, there are traditional games you may want to try.
☎ 82-2-2264-4412

8 hangang.seoul.go.kr

Travel Information

Anguk Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.3), walk 1 minute. Insa-dong, located in the middle of the city, is an important place where old but precious and traditional goods are on display. Within these alleys are galleries, traditional restaurants, traditional teahouses, and cafes. There are traditional performances and exhibits as well. Insa-dong is especially popular with foreign tourists. This is where they can experience and see traditional Korean culture firsthand, and also purchase pieces of fine art.

Free Shuttle Bus Daebang Subway Station, Yeouinaru Subway Station, Yeouido Subway Station With 63 floors and measuring a height of 264m, the 63 CITY is one of Korea’s tallest and most recognized building. The 63 CITY boasts spectacular views of the Hangang River and the surrounding mountains of Bugaksan, Namsan and Gwanaksan. The 63 CITY’s basement floor boasts convenient facilities, including 63 Sea World, 63 Sky Deck, 63 IMAX theater.
☎ 82-2-789-5679 8 www.63city.co.kr

Apgujeong Subway Station (Seoul Subway No.3) Apgujeong is a mecca for shopping among trendsetters in their 20s and 30s. Shortly after Rodeo Street came into being during the 1990s, unique fashion shops, bars, and cafes began to open one by one, drawing young people en masse to come create their own fashion codes. There are many shops specializing in secondhand luxury items. Multi-shops, which purvey various brands, also seem to be gaining popularity.

Seoul World Cup Stadium
World Cup Subway Station (Seoul Subway No.6) In 1996, Korea and Japan were chosen by FIFA to organize the World Cup. Seoul, lacking a soccer marketing pitch big enough to hold what is probably the biggest media event on the planet, was soon to possess a brand new purpose-built stadium, the Seoul World Cup Stadium. Here is a presentation of this stadium that symbolized the hopes and aspirations of the whole nation during the 2002 World Cup.
☎ 82-2-2128-2000 8 http://www.sisul.or.kr/sub04

Myeong-dong Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.4) Located in the heart of Seoul, Myeongdong is a representative shopping district in Korea. It also houses the headquarters of banks and securities brokers, and many Western and traditional restaurants. Compared to Namdaemun and Dongdaemun Market which sell products at low prices, Myeong-dong is lined with quality brand name shops, while mid-class brand name shops and no-name brand shops are located in the side alleys. All kinds of shops and restaurants are densely located on the main street.
☎ Tourist Information Center 82-2-774-3238

Namdaemun Market
Hoehyeon Station (Seoul Subway Line No.4) Opened in 1964, Namdaemun Market is the largest traditional market in Korea with various goods in store. All products are sold at affordable prices and the stores in this area also function as a wholesale markets. Most of the goods are made directly by the storeowners. The Namdaemun Market sells a variety of clothes, glasses, kitchenware, toys, mountain gear, fishing equipment, stationery, fine arts, accessories, hats, carpets, flowers, ginseng, and imported goods.
☎ Tourist Information Center 82-2-752-5728 8 http://www.indm.net

Dongdaemun Market
Dongdaemun Stadium Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.1, 2, 4) Ever since its opening in 1905, Dongdaemun Market has been one of the major markets in Korea. Specializing in wholesale clothing, the market has grown large, having more than 20 shopping malls. A full range of fashion items that cover head to toe, are found in Dongdaemun Market at inexpensive prices.
☎ Tourist Information Center 82-2-2236-9135

Itaewon Shopping Street
Itaewon Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No.6) Itaewon is the most exotic place in Seoul representing fusion culture with a distinctive atmosphere. Many people say, “You may not know Seoul, but you should know Itaewon,” showing how renowned a shopping district Itaewon is. The area has a vibrant ambience with shops, restaurants, bars and street vendors. Most signboards are written in English, and English speaking people are often seen on the street.
☎Tourist Information Center 82-2-3785-2514

Chapter 3

The Passion of Koreans

Today, I‛m just going to hang around the neighborhood with Alex and talk about the Korean spirit. It is a mix of passion and tranquility. At times Koreans can be wildly excited – like when the national team‛s Red Devils soccer fans got the whole nation out on the streets dressed in red during World Cup 2002. But there is also a tranquility that has endured here for 5,000 years. Koreans have always relied on strength and endurance to overcome great challenges.

Taekwondo, Korea’s traditional martial art
Developed two thousand years ago, Taekwondo is Korea’s national martial art. Taekwondo is for everyone to learn and it teaches defensive and offensive moves using hands and feet. Taekwondo is a sport that trains the body and the mind. A demonstration sport at the 1988 Seoul Olympics, it has been an official Olympic sport since the 2000 Sydney Olympics. The World Taekwondo Federation comprises 188 countries.

Exhausted from traveling so much in the last few days, Alex and I ended up oversleeping. After breakfast we settled on the couch. While my mom prepared tea and fruit, I opened up the family photo album.
“Is that you, Sanghyun?” “Yup, that’s me doing taekwondo.” “Do all Korean kids study taekwondo?” “Sure. If not in private school, they are bound to have some instruction during gym classes. Taekwondo’s an excellent way of training one’s mental strength as well as physical defenses.” “How so?” “The codes of taekwondo emphasize great patience and strong willpower. All Korean guys take taekwondo training during their military service. The importance of patience and willpower is even in Korea’s creation myth.”

Alex is cracking me up. He’s looking at my old taekwondo pictures and trying to imitate the moves, but he’s doing them all wrong.
“Here, let me show you.”

Alex watched with curiosity as I demonstrated basic taekwondo moves.
“Wow! It almost looks like a dance. It’s subtle, but


Let’s go Korea!

I can definitely feel the energy. Can you teach me a little?” “Of course!”

I taught Alex the very first set of taekwondo moves, ‘Taegeuk Il Jang.’
“Am I doing this right? This is kind of difficult. I can’t believe most kids in Korea grow up training like this.”

As I watched Alex practicing taekwondo moves and wiping sweat from his forehead, I thought to myself that it would be good to take him to a performance of ‘Jump.’ I’m sure he’ll be more than excited from watching all the fancy martial arts moves that come from not just taekwondo but from taekkeon and others.
Kyorugi ▼

The Passion of Koreans


Taekwondo System

Taekwondo poomsae are the basic successive defensive and offensive movements one does with an imaginary opponent to improve form, flexibility and concentration. Taekwondo is about mastering proper hand and feet techniques but also building self discipline and respect. As taekwondo students master the poomsae taught by their master, they are certified and can advance to the next dan (level). Poomase training gets more rigorous with each level, and it can take well over 25 years for a student to become a master at the highest rank, 9th dan.

Kyorugi means sparring. It can be in the form of practicing with a partner or actual bouts that put all the poomsae training to test as opponents try to strike one another while at the same time using defensive techniques to avoid or deflect blows. Kyorugi is at the center of taekwondo training, and a large part of the sparring is an unspoken dialogue of movement to size up the skill, power and weaknesses of the opponent.


Let’s go Korea!

Kyukpa is one of the methods that is used to measure the power and speed of the practitioner by applying a variety of taekwondo skills to boards, bricks or any chosen material with application of physical force and mental concentration.

The Passion of Koreans


Red Devils
The Red Devils are the official support group for the Korean national soccer team. This group was originally called the “Great Hankuk Supporters Club.” The name “Red Devils” originates further back from the 1983 FIFA World Youth Championship when the Korean youth team reached the semifinals. The international media dubbed the team and supporting fans “Red Furies.” Through translation, it became “Red Devils” and was selected in 1997 as the official name of the organization. Before the 2006 World Cup, anyone could be a Red Devil, but now the policy has been changed so that only a member of the club can be a Red Devil.

Red Devils, Korea’s national pride
I wanted to teach Alex more about the spirit of Korea. But it wasn’t easy trying to explain intangible ideas. Then I thought of the 2002 World Cup and began to sift through the photo album.
“Alex, take a look at this picture.” “That’s a lot of people. Why are they all wearing red?” “It’s a picture from the 2002 World Cup. It was the first World Cup of the 21st century, and also the first to be hosted in Asia. Korea and Japan were the cohosts, and that was also the first time the event was co-hosted by two countries.” “Are all these people here to go to the stadium?” “No, those are the people that cheered from the

2002 FIFA World Cup
The 2002 FIFA World Cup was held in South Korea and Japan from May 31 to June 30. The two countries were chosen as joint hosts by FIFA in May 1996. For the first time in its history the World Cup was held in Asia and organized by two countries. Brazil won the tournament for a record fifth time, beating Germany 2–0 in the final.


Let’s go Korea!

streets because they couldn’t get tickets. The Red Devils received as much attention from the international media as some of the big teams.” “The Red Devils? Who are they?’ “They are the support club for the Korean national football team. But during the World Cup, anyone wearing a red shirt and cheering on the national team was a Red Devil. I still remember when millions of people gathered in the streets and shouted ‘Dae~han min guk’! That’s the country’s official name in Korean.” “Sanghyun, what’s that mark on the shirts and the headbands?” “That’s called the taegeuk. It is the symbol of harmony and coexistence of the yin and the yang. It holds the meaning that the universe was created and grows from the interactions between the two. This mark is also drawn in the center of the Korean flag.” “So much meaning for such a simple symbol. Yang is the active side, right? I feel a lot of yang just from


The Korean flag is called the Taegeukgi. Its design symbolizes the principles of yin and yang. The circle in the center of the flag is divided into two equal parts. The upper red section represents the proactive cosmic forces of the Yang. Conversely, the lower blue section represents the responsive cosmic forces of the Yin. The two forces together embody the concepts of continual movement, balance, and harmony that characterize the sphere of infinity. The circle is surrounded by four trigrams, one in each corner. Each trigram symbolizes one of the four universal elements: heaven, earth, fire, and water.

The Passion of Koreans


Mugunghwa (National Flower)

looking at the picture. It’s amazing so many people got together in the streets for this.” “The 2002 World Cup wasn’t just a simple sports event. It was a grand festival that drew people together. The tendency to unite during times of difficulty or great joy is a longstanding shared sentiment and one of the forces moving our country.”

The Rose of Sharon is special to the Korean people. According to records, Koreans have treasured this heavenly flower since ancient times. There exist more than 100 cultivars of the Rose of Sharon indigenous to Korea, and the “Dansim” (flower with red center) variety serves as the national flower of Korea. A Rose of Sharon bush can have some 2,000 to 3,000 flowers and is strong enough to be transplanted or cut for decoration and flower arranging. Thus, the flower represents the wish for lasting national development and prosperity.

Miracle on the Hangang
Alex seemed interested to know what motivates Koreans.
“Can you explain more about Korean cultural beliefs?” “Sure. Koreans have always pulled together and worked with others. The country was a farming nation just a few generations back. Serious matters such as a marriage or death in the family also brought people together. We always celebrated and grieved with others as if the matters were our own. It is no surprise that Koreans have always displayed great unity during national crises.” “What are some of the difficult moments that Korea

▼ Geobukseon (Turtle Ship) replica

faced?” “Korea has a really long history. There were times of peace and prosperity, but there were also critical moments. One of them occurred 400 years


Let’s go Korea!

ago when Japan launched a major invasion of the peninsula. Korea’s military and the civilians joined forces and fought off the invasion.” “There must’ve been great leaders to help the people out of times like that.” “During the Japanese invasion Admiral Yi Sun-sin helped defeat the Japanese by creating a fleet of ironclads called turtle ships because the their upper decks were covered with an iron plate like a shell. He demolished the Japanese fleet with brilliant tactics. But the more important fact is that everyone took part in the war. Even women contributed to saving our country.”
Statue of Admiral Yi Sun-sin ▼

I told Alex some of the hardships and difficult battles that Admiral Yi faced. I also explained the meaning of Admiral Yi’s most famous quote, “Those who wish to live will die, and those who wish to die will live.” Alex is a big history buff and was delighted to have found out about such a great figure.
“Were there any other times of great difficulty?” “Korea was under the rule of Imperial Japan from 1910 to 1945, and we also suffered the Korean War from 1950 to 1953, and the 1997 Asian financial crisis. But as we’ve always done, Koreans were able to become united and overcome the challenges. I think our cohesiveness is Korea’s greatest strength and what has kept the country going for 5,000

The begining of Korea

The “Lord of Heaven” Hwanin had a son, Hwanung, who yearned to live on the earth among the valleys and the mountains. Hwanin permitted Hwanung and 3,000 followers to descend onto Baekdusan Mountain, then called Taebaeksan Mountain, where Hwanung founded Sinsi (City of God). A tiger and a bear prayed to Hwanung that they may become human. Upon hearing their prayers, Hwanung gave them 20 cloves of garlic and a bundle of mugwort, ordering them to eat only this sacred food and remain out of the sunlight for 100 days. The tiger gave up after about twenty days and left the cave. However, the bear remained and was transformed into a woman. The bear-woman (Ungnyeo) was grateful and made offerings to Hwanung. However, she lacked a husband, and soon became sad and prayed beneath a sindansu (divine betula) tree to be blessed with a child. Hwanung, moved by her prayers, took her for his wife and soon she gave birth to a son, who was named Dangun Wanggeom. Dangun ascended to the throne, built the walled city of Unknown, near presentday Pyeongyang, and called his kingdom Joseon (known today as Gojoseon or Ancient Joseon).


Let’s go Korea!

years.” “I can’t believe that such an advanced country like Korea had so much trouble in the near past.” “Me neither. That’s why other countries call what the Koreans have accomplished until now the Miracle on the Hangang. Just around fifty years ago, Korea was one of the poorest countries on earth, and now it ranks as the thirteenth most economically powerful nation. It is also a great feat for Seoul to have hosted one of the most successful Olympics ever.” “When were the Olympics held in Korea?” “Before I was born; in 1988. The Seoul Olympics brought together over 150 countries. It was the first time in twelve years that the U.S. and Soviet Union were both at the Games.”

National Anthem, Aegukga

I explained to Alex that the spirit of Korea can be red-hot, like the enthusiasm of the Red Devils, but also deep and broad like the waters of the East Sea. He nodded as I told him that the taegeuk mark in the middle of the Korean flag is the symbol of such duality.

The Korean national anthem is “Aegukga.” Before the birth of the Republic in 1948, the words of the anthem were often sung to the tune of the Scottish folk song, Auld Lang Syne. Maestro Ahn Eak-tai (1905~1965), then living in Spain, felt that it was inappropriate to sing this patriotic song to the tune of another country’s folk song. So in 1935, he composed original music to go with the lyrics, and the then exiled Korean Provisional Government adopted it as the national anthem.

1988 Seoul Olympics
The 24th Summer Olympic Games were successfully held in Seoul from September 17 to October 2, 1988. The games concluded after a 16-day run under the themes of peace, harmony, and progress. The largest Olympiad up to its time, more than 13,000 athletes and officials from 160 countries gathered to promote the ideals the Olympics uphold while transcending the barriers separating the East and the West and the North and the South. The first boycott-free Olympics in twelve years, the Seoul Olympic Games rose above international hostilities and national interests and shed light upon the founding ideals and principles of the Olympic Games.

The Passion of Koreans


visual Information
Korean Style
Hangeul: Korean Language
That all Koreans speak and write the same language is a decisive factor in the forging of strong national identity. Great King Sejong commissioned the creation of a Korean alphabet during the 15th century. Before the creation of the standard alphabet, Hangeul, only a small percentage of the population was literate; few could master the difficult Chinese characters used by the upper class. Hangeul consists of 10 vowels and 14 consonants that combine into numerous syllabic groupings. The writing system is relatively simple, systematic, and comprehensive; it is considered one of the most scientific writing systems in the world. Hangeul is easy to learn and write and has contributed greatly to Korea’s high literacy rate and advanced printing industry.

Hanok: Korean-style Housing
From the Three Kingdoms period to the late Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), the traditional Korean house, Hanok, remained relatively unchanged. It incorporates ondol, the unique Korean heating system first developed in the North. Smoke and heat generated from the low-lying kitchen stoves were channeled through flues built under the floor. Hanok were built without using nails. Instead, they were assembled with wooden pegs. Since the late 1960s, Western-style high-rise apartment buildings have sprouted all over the country. However, modern ondol systems, heated water pipes running under flooring, still remain popular.

Hansik: Korean Food
Korean traditional food, Hansik, was developed for the purpose of healthy eating throughout the four seasons. One of the special traits of Korean food is its attempt to preserve the natural tastes of the ingredients. Another trait is the storing and fermenting of food in order to strengthen and enhance its taste and nutrition. Fermentation of soy, kimchi, and salted fish has been Korean culinary staples since early times. Hansik was scientifically developed by the ancestors to preserve and enhance the tastes of different seasons and climates.

Hanbok: Korean Clothing
Koreans wove cloth from hemp, arrowroot, and silk. During the Three Kingdoms period, men wore a short jacket, trousers, and an overcoat with a hat, belt, and shoes. The women wore a short jacket with two long ribbons tied to form a knot, a highwaist dress, an overcoat, white cotton socks, and boat-shaped shoes. This attire, known as Hanbok, has been handed down in the same form for hundreds of years with little change except for the length of the short jacket and dress. In the 1970s, Hanbok use declined sharply. A few Koreans still wear traditional Hanbok but mostly on special holidays like Seollal and Chuseok and family festivities such as Hwangap, a parent’s 60th birthday.

visual Information
Hanji: Korean Paper

Since the method of papermaking has crossed the border, Koreans have developed a unique way of making even sturdier and more durable paper. Hanji is made by boilig mulberry tree bark and then drying the extracted fibers. Compared to Japanese or Chinese paper, which is made from a mixture of mulberry bark and other materials, Hanji is sturdier and preserves the texture of the mulberry bark. As the Korean adage “Paper lasts for a thousand years and silk lasts for five hundred years” tells us, Hanji is a valuable cultural asset that reflects the implicit tenacity of the Koean people.

Han-guk Eumak: Korean Music

Traditional music is composed for traditional instruments and expresses the values and beliefs of the Korean people. Traditional Korean music is categorized into two parts: gugak (lit. ‘national music’), which has been passed down for centuries, and changjak gugak (lit. ‘newly-composed national music’), which incorporates Western musical practices into a song performed by traditional musical instruments. A popular form of traditional Korean music, samulnori (percussion quartet) was created for stage music in 1978. In this sense, samulnori is categorized as changjak gugak.

Travel Information
1 2

Anseong Namsadang Baudeogi Performance ▶ Oct.
Anseong-si, Gyeonggi-do
Anseong had been the center of entertainment in Korea. Since 2001, the festival has been held to celebrate and further develop the traditional culture of Namsadang and the art of Baudeogi.

Chuncheon International Mime Festival

▶ May

Chuncheon-si, Gangwon-do
The Chuncheon International Mime Festival is the leading performing arts festival in Korea. Each year, renowned artists give outstanding mime performances.



Yangyang Pine Mushroom Festival ▶Sept.
Yangyang-gun, Gangwon-do
The Yangyang Pine Mushroom Festival to be held in Korea’s representative pine mushroom production sites is a festival centering on pine mushroom, which is known as Song-i mushroom in Korea.

Boryeong Mud Festival ▶ July
Boryeong-si, Chungcheongnam-do
The Boryeong Mud festival is filled with fun where visitors enjoy mud massages with quality mud powder from Daecheon Beach and a nearby tidal flat. Various programs are available such as a mega mud tub, mud wrestling, mud sliding, a mud prison, mud military training and so on.



Geumsan Insam Festival ▶ Sept.
Geumsan-gun, Chungcheongnam-do
The reputable ginseng from Geumsan is featured at the annual festival from Aug. 29 through Sept. 7 at Geumsan Ginseng Center, Plaza and the Ginseng & Herb Street.

Gimje Horizon Festival ▶ Oct.
Gimje-si, Jeollabuk-do
The Gimje Jipyeongseon Festival was launched to promote the natural beauty of Gimje and its rice. There are many programs to enjoy, including a samulnori contest, rural landscape drawing contest, celebratory performances, street parade, ssireum, and a traditional wedding.



Hampyeong Butterfly Festival ▶ April
Hampyeong-gun, Jeollanam-do
The Hampyeong Butterfly Festival has five main themes and operates a General Ecology Experience Hall where you can watch rare butterflies close up.

Gangjin Celadon Festival ▶ Aug.
Gangjin-gun, Jeollanam-do
The Gangjin Celadon Cultural Festival is a great opportunity to see Korean celadon of artistic value, and it includes modern celadon produced by leading artists, as well as traditional works that have been designated as national treasures.



Andong International Mask Dance Festival ▶Sept.
Andong-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
Troupes from 15 countries stage high-level performances, and 13 mask dance troupes in different categories like the Hahoe Byeolsin Gut Talchum in Korea add to the fun and diversity of mask dances.

Jinju Namgang Festival ▶Oct.
Jinju-si, Gyeongsangnam-do
The Jinju Namgang Yudeung Lantern Festival feature an exhibition of lanterns representing the symbols of different countries and a wish lantern where visitors write their wish on a piece of paper and attach it to a lantern.




1 9 4 5 6 10 8

Jeju Cherry Blossom & Rape Flower Festival ▶March ~ April
The annual Jeju Rape Flower Festival is held during April. The flowers in this festival are absolutely stunning. And Jeju is the first place in Korea to see fully bloomed cherry blossoms. Jeju’s cherry blossoms are known for their large pink petals. The Jeju Cherry Blossom Festival is a great reason to visit Jeju.



Chapter 4

World Heritage in Korea

Hello, I‛m Sanghyun‛s hyeong Jaehyun. Today I decided to
visit some UNESCO World Heritage sites with Sanghyun and Alex. We‛ll first go to the Jongmyo Shrine and nearby Changdeokgung Palace in central Seoul. The shrine has a solemn look and atmosphere, and the palace complex is more elaborate with architecture that reflects the surrounding nature. We can talk more about Korean heritage as we walk around the historic sites.

Dolmen, the secret history of the Korean Peninsula
After breakfast, Sanghyun and Alex came into my room to ask what we were doing today. I was looking at a guidebook showing Korean World Heritage sites.
“Jaehyun, what’s that? It looks like some kind of Stonehenge.” Dolmen
Dolmen is a type of stone tomb made in prehistoric times. It is called a ‘goindol’ in Korean. Dolmens are one of the most prominent types of tombs from the Bronze Age, and approximately 30,000 of them are spread throughout Korea. Dolmen sites in Gochang, Hwasun, and Ganghwa contain valuable information about the formation and the evolution of dolmens. The sites are currently listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites.

“It’s a dolmen, a prehistoric grave. Ancient tribes would bury their dead leaders in these tombs.” “A little breezy for a tomb, don’t you think?” “All that’s left are these stone tables now. But considering people drug these huge slabs around and packed them in dirt mounds as far back as 2,000 BC, I’d say they built them to last. Guys, know which country has the most dolmens?” “Egypt?” “Is it China?”


Let’s go Korea!

“No, actually you’re in it. This says approximately 30,000 dolmens are scattered around Korea. The ones in Gochang in Jeollabuk-do, Hwasun in Jeollanam-do, and on Ganghwa Island in Incheon are UNESCO World Heritage sites.” “Really?” “Yeah. Another Korea World Heritage pop quiz: What’s the Jikji Memory of the World Prize? I’ll even give you a clue, Jikji is short for Buljo Jikjisimcheyojeol.”

Seokguram Grotto and Bulguksa Temple
The Seokguram Grotto contains a monumental statue of the Buddha looking at the sea in the bhumisparsha mudra position. With the surrounding portrayals of gods, Bodhisattvas and disciples, it is considered a masterpiece of Buddhist art in the Far East. The Temple of Bulguksa (built in 774) and the Seokguram Grotto form a religious architectural complex of exceptional significance.

Sanghyun stared blankly, but Alex tried to come up with something.
Buljo Jikjisimcheyojeol “From the temple, I remember ‘Bul’ means ‘Buddhism,’ but you lost me with the rest of it.” “Not bad, for someone here for only a couple of days. But Sanghyun, I’m voting you off the peninsula.” “Oh come on. Did you know what it was before you saw it in the book?” “Contestants don’t
Buljo Jikjisimcheyojeol contains the essentials of Zen Buddhism compiled by priest Baegun in late Goryeo period. This book was printed at the old Heungdeoksa Temple in Cheongju, using movable metal type in July 1377. Jikji is the world’s oldest example of movable metal type printing in existance and shows us an important technical change in the printing history of humanity.

World Heritage in Korea


get to question the MC. Just pack your things and go. Alex, Jikji is a Buddhist scroll that is the oldest remaining written document printed with metal type, and the prize goes to an individual or group that contributes most to the preservation of documentary heritage.”








Changdeokgung Palace, Seokguram Grotto and Bulguksa Temple are other World Heritage sites in Korea. And the Hunminjeongeum, the official declaration of Hangeul, and the Tripitaka Koreana woodblocks are official UNESCO Memory of the World items. We decided to visit some of Korea’s World Heritage
Jongmyo Shrine
Jongmyo is the oldest and most authentic of the Confucian royal shrines to have been preserved. Dedicated to the forefathers of the Joseon Dynasty (1392~1910), the shrine has existed in its present form since the 16th century and houses tablets bearing the teachings of members of the former royal family. Ritual ceremonies linking music, song and dance still take place there, perpetuating a tradition that goes back to the 14th century.

“Hyeong, I’ll go look up how to get there.” “Okay. Ask Alex what he wants to see and get the directions online.”

After browsing the web, Alex said he wanted to go to the Jongmyo Shrine and the Changdeokgung Palace


Let’s go Korea!

Complex, which are both in Seoul. I wanted to take him to Bulguksa Temple and Seokguram Grotto, but there wasn’t enough time to travel down to Gyeongju in the southeast part of the country. Maybe when he comes back to Korea the KTX bullet train line going there will be finished, and we could make a day trip out of it.


Jongmyo and palaces that trace Korea’s history back 600 years
We took the subway because Alex liked to find his own way around and practice reading the names of the stations in Hangeul. He kept talking about how convenient and well maintained the system was and how much he liked the bus-subway free transfer system since he never had to worry about having the right fare. When we got on a train, there were a couple of empty seats.

Jongmyodaeje is a grand ceremony honoring the past kings of Korea. Five times a year during the Joseon Dynasty, the king himself used to conduct the ceremony in Jongmyo, where Jongmyojerye and Jongmyojeryeak were performed. The Japanese banned the ceremony during their rule of Korea, but the ceremony resumed in 1969. Now Jongmyodaeje takes place every first Sunday of May.

World Heritage in Korea


Changdeokgung Palace
Changdeokgung Palace was constructed in 1405 after Gyeongbokgung Palace was built. This palace was located to the east of Gyeongbokgung, the main palace, so it was also known as Donggung (East Palace). Changdeokgung Palace burned during the Japanese invasion of 1592 and was reconstructed in 1611 by Gwanghaegun. It became a UNESCO World Heritage site in December 1997.

“Why aren’t people sitting in those seats?” “They’re reserved for pregnant women, the disabled and old people. “Korea really treats its elders well.” “Yeah, If you’re over 65, you don’t even have to pay to ride the subway and you have a reserved seat.” “Cool, I’m definitely coming back to Korea in 50 years.”

As we came out of the subway, I thought of a good way to explain the importance of Jongmyo Shrine.
“Alex, remember how you said you were surprised that our grandma lives with us and everyone gets

100 Let’s go Korea!

along so well and that we won’t start eating until an adult takes the first bite?” “Yeah.” “Jongmyo can be better understood if you think about such Korean culture. It is a place for honoring the past kings and queens of the Joseon Dynasty. A big ceremony takes place here in May every year.” “Sort of like the way you said your family serves food and drinks to your ancestors at their tombs on Lunar New Year’s?” “Right, but this ceremony is much bigger with hundreds of musicians, officials and relatives of the last royal family all in Hanbok.” I think it’s cool that Koreans want to show their old kings they remember them even though the monarchy is gone.”

Seokjojeon in Deoksugung Palace

Deoksugung Palace, just across from City Hall, was originally a prince’s home, but later designated as the king’s temporary home. It became a full-fledged palace during the reign of King Gojong (1863~1907), who led many building projects, including Seokjojeon, the largest stone building in Korea: it was once used as a museum of modern art but now houses royal relics.

Gyeongbokgung Palace
Gyeongbokgung Palace is the largest and most historically significant palace of the Joseon period. It was built by King Taejo, the founder of the Joseon Dynasty, in 1395, as a symbol of his new reign. Like most other palaces, it was damaged during the Japanese invasion of Korea in the 16th century. One of its most famous structures is Gyeonghoeru, the pavilion where kings held receptions and parties.

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Changgyeonggung Palace
Changgyeonggung Palace was built in 1418 by King Sejong for his father, King Taejong. King Sejong named it Suganggung Palace at first, but it was later renamed Changgyeonggung Palace after King Seongjong built Myeongjeongjeon and Munjeongjeon. Changgyeonggung was turned into a zoo during the Japanese imperial rule, but it regained its original status in 1987.

On the way, I explained how Confucianism is still strong in Korea and children are taught to respect their parents and elders. We walked past Hyangdaecheong, the place where they keep the items for the ritual, and Eosuksil, where the king used to prepare for the ceremony to honor his ancestors. We then entered Jeongjeon’s courtyard.
“Jaehyun, is this where they keep the ancestral tablets with the names of past kings?” “Yeah. This is the oldest existing royal Confucian shrine.” “But it looks rather plain.”

Hwaseong Fortress
When the Joseon King Jeongjo moved his father’s tomb near Suwon at the end of the 18th century, he also built a strong fortress nearby. Laid out according to the precepts of an influential military architect of the period, the structure brought together the latest developments in the field from both East and West. The massive walls, extending for nearly 6km, still survive; they are pierced by four gates and equipped with bastions, artillery towers and other features.

“Palaces have elaborate designs, but the plain architecture of Jongmyo is a good match for the rituals

102 Let’s go Korea!

that take place here.” “The elaborate court music played during the ritual is called Jongmyojeryeak and it’s a UNESCO-designated Intangible Heritage,” Sanghyun said proudly.

He must’ve looked up the information before we left in case I gave another quiz. After exploring Jongmyo, we headed for Changdeokgung Palace, and I explained how it’s different from other palaces.
“Changgyeonggung and Gyeongbokgung are laid out on grids that follow pung-su. That’s Korean for fengshui, the ancient Asian concept of drawing on subterranean energy flows in architecture. But Changdeokgung’s structure is a much freer form. It was built to blend visually with the natural surrounding. It’s smaller than the main palace but many people like it more.” “Everything seems to be so well in sync in Seoul: nature, people, traditions, and the present.” “For 600 years, Seoul has been the capital of Korea, so we honor that heritage. On the other hand, we want the city to have global business appeal, so
Namsangol Hanok Village ▼

there are plenty of tall buildings all connected by a high-tech infrastructure.” “The palaces and temples are impressive, but how did regular people live?” “Oh, you should see Namsangol Hanok Village.”

Hanok: centuries-old, eco-friendly houses
We took the subway to Chungmuro. There were a lot of foreigners looking around the village. Whenever Alex heard them wondering about the design, he’d start up a conversation and pass on what he had picked up so far.
“Alex, how do you like Hanok?” “It looks awesome – very elegant and at the same
▼ Interior of hanok

time relaxing.”

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“You’re thinking about studying architecture in college, right? You should study how Hanok were designed to blend harmoniously with nature. The mixture of curves and edges on the roofs of Hanok can be carried over to modern architecture as well.”
Eave at Naejangsa Temple ▲

Sanghyun had clearly done his homework. He told Alex,
“Hanok are also good to study because the buildings are very efficient. For example, they use an ondol system that takes heat and smoke from a kitchen fireplace built low to heat the entire house. They were ingeniously constructed to let breezes cool the house in the summer and use the energy from cooking fires to heat the rooms while cooking meals. Koreans still use ondol but now

Haeinsa Temple Janggyeongpanjeon

Haeinsa Tample is home to the Tripitaka Koreana, the most complete collection of Buddhist texts, engraved on 80,000 woodblocks between 1237 and 1248. The buildings of Janggyeongpanjeon from the 15th century, were constructed to house the woodblocks, which are also revered as exceptional works of art.

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boilers heat hot water that circulates through pipes encased in concrete floors.” “That’s amazing.” “Korean architects have been thinking scientifically about how to use and protect against nature for a long time. Another good example is the Janggyeongpanjeon at Haeinsa Temple, which is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.” “That’s where is, right?” “Daeng, ding dong: You win the bonus round. The Janggyeongpanjeon is the
▲ Experience of Neolttuigi

the Tripitaka Koreana

world’s oldest conservation depository. Since the fifteenth century it has preserved the woodblocks by factoring in the surrounding environment, temperature and air flow.” “Thanks Jaehyun. I have a much deeper appreciation for Hanok and Korean architects.”

▼ Tuhonori

Namsangol Hanok Village is in the heart of the city, we had caught a glimpse of it at the bottom of Namsan when we went to the top of the mountain. And Alex excitedly took many close-up shots of traditional architecture. Old Korean games like neolttuigi, tuhonori, and yunnori were set up for visitors to play. We tried tuhonori. You have to throw sticks into three vases lined up next to each other. It sounds and looks simple, but believe me, it’s not. We slowly walked up the hill and reached a park containing a time capsule. It was buried to commemorate

106 Let’s go Korea!

the 600th anniversary of Seoul becoming the capital. An inscription said the capsule will be opened in 2394 to mark the 1,000th anniversary. Looking down from the plaza, all the Hanok clustered below looked like models made by architecture majors.
“It must’ve been so nice to live up here during the Joseon period. The gardens, the houses, everything feels natural. I want to live in a place like this.” “I’ll study Hanok and build you a house like this someday, but it’s not going to be cheap,” Alex said with a grin.

Hallyu: Korean wave

We visited the crafts museum and pond before leaving the village.

The Korean Wave: internationally recognized movies and dramas
I looked at my watch and saw we still had some time before dinner. While I was trying to figure out where to take Alex next, Sanghyun asked,
“Hyeong, why don’t we see a movie before dinner since we’re at Chungmuro?” “Okay. That sounds like a plan. Chungmuro’s the center of Korean filmmaking, and Korean dramas and movies are gaining international attention.”

Hallyu is the spread of Korean popular culture into foreign, usually Asian, countries. Around 2000, when Korean dramas started being broadcast throughout Asia, the popularity of Korean actors and actress, and Korean entertainment soared overseas. The popularity of Korean dramas, pop songs, and movies has led to interest in kimchi and red pepper paste, Korean ramen, and Korean home appliances. Hallyu is inclusive of foreign interest in not only Korean popular culture but also Korean food and products.

Korean singer, BOA ▼

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▼ “Old Boy” one of the Korean films to take awards at international film festivals

“Yeah, Sanghyun’s always talking about Koreans who picked up awards for directing and acting. We watched ‘Old Boy’ because it won the Cannes Grand Prize, but it was so dark. I liked that Korean western better. What was it, Sanghyun?” “In English, ‘The Good, the Bad, and the Weird,’ but Koreans just call it ‘Nom, Nom, Nom.’”

Sanghyun said, as he used his phone to go online and see what movies were playing nearby.
“Yeah, I liked that too. It was playing in China when I was there, and our family watched Korean dramas in Thailand when we were on vacation. Remember, Sanghyun? So Hallyu has really spread Korea’s image around.” “What’s Hallyu?” “It literally means Korean Wave. It’s a term the Taiwanese used to describe the big influx of Korean pop culture that started sweeping Asia around 2000. Chinese and Japanese media use that expression, too.
▼ Jeon Do-yeon receiving Best Actress Award at 2007 Cannes Film Festival

Koreans like to hear it because it shows our cultural products have advanced enough to compete globally.” “I’ve booked three seats for a Korean movie at Daehan Theater. We can walk there from here. I’ve heard its good.” “Will it have English subtitles?” “Oh, I didn’t think about that. Want me to see if there’s a Hollywood film playing?” “No, it’s ok. I’ll sit between you and get translation in real-time and in stereo.”

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As we walked to the theater, we talked about Korean films that have been remade in Hollywood versions like “The Lake House” and “A Tale of Two Sisters.” Alex wanted to see the originals, so I told him I’d get DVDs or download some films with subtitles. The Korean Tourism Organization screens
Seoul Cinema theater ▼

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Internationally Renowned Korean Film Festivals
Pusan International Film Festival
The Pusan International Film Festival (PIFF) began in 1996 and takes place in Busan (or Pusan) every fall. It is Korea’s biggest international film event and also one of Asia’s most important film festivals. The Festival is a noncompetition event, and it is divided into section by subjects. PIFF is focused on introducing new, unique movies and debuting thirdworld directors. In 1999, PIFF established the Pusan Promotion Plan to help a new director find a funding source.

Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival
Bucheon (or Puchon) has developed into a city of 800,000 in the past two decades. Now it is working on its self-image as the representative of culture in Gyeonggi-do with much emphasis on visual art and music. PiFan, starting in 1997, has grown into one of Korea’s most renowned festivals and symbolizes Buchoen, a city of culture, and a visual festival to quench the thirst for sensibility and experiment of the film manias in Korea. PiFan has enjoyed with various movie organizations such as the European Fantastic Film Festival Federation (EFFFF), Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival, and is now regarded as the biggest genre film festival in Asia.

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movies with English subtitles and one or two of the big theaters do at special times, but I want him to be able to keep them to remember his trip.

Kimchi, the nation’s favorite food
As soon as we got home from the movie, the smell of food coming from the kitchen made our mouths water.
“I’m starving from walking around all day. What’s for dinner, Mom?” “I made bibimbap and bulgogi. I wasn’t sure what Alex likes, so I thought this way he’d have a choice.”

As we ate, we talked about Korean food culture.
Making baechu kimchi ▼

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“Mrs. Im, I don’t think I’ve ever had a meal in Korea without kimchi.” “You’re right. We eat kimchi for breakfast, lunch and dinner, any time of the year.” “I like kimchi, but I’ll stick with cereal for breakfast.” “You should eat all the kimchi you can while you’re here. It’s good for you. Because of the fermentation, kimchi contains a lot of beneficial bacteria, kind of like yogurt.” “I heard many Asians started eating kimchi because Koreans had so few cases of avian flu.” “We think it’s because kimchi is so nutritious and boosts the immune system.” “But I wouldn’t want to eat the same thing all the time.” “There are hundreds of kinds of kimchi.” “Great, so long as I’m here, but American supermarkets just have the main cabbage variety. Our
▼ Traditional full-course dinner

school cafeteria serves Vietnamese food but no Ko-

112 Let’s go Korea!

rean dishes. If they were more widely available, I’d eat bibimbap, bulgogi and kimchi every week. I think students back in America would love Korean food.”

Alex showed a little too much interest in Korean food. He gave Mom a brilliant idea to help him and her.
“Tomorrow is Sanghyun’s grandmother’s birthday. How about you guys help out by cooking tomorrow? I think it would be a great experience for all of you.” “Oh, wish we could, but we don’t know how to cook,” I said, trying to make a save. “That’s my whole point, go online and find recipes in English, so Alex can learn how to make some Korean food when he goes back home. I’ll make sure you do it right.”

Unfortunately, after dinner, Alex went online and found a recipe for bulgogi and a blog with clear pictures and detailed instructions. He seemed so happy to learn how to cook some Korean food and do something for my family, so I printed out the pages and said I’d help him.

Hanbok, a harmony of lines, curves and colors
Alex was up early in the morning, getting ready to make bulgogi. I helped Sanghyun and Alex prepare the vegetables and the seasoning. The instruction page that Alex found was actually very detailed. While

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▲ A holiday reunion

he was having fun cooking the meat on the grill, Sanghyun and I went inside and changed into Hanbok. We only wear it on very special occasions, and Mom had decided this was one of those times.
“Wow, that looks really cool! Why don’t you ever wear that back at school, Sanghyun?” “This is just a treat for you and my grandma for her birthday. There are no pockets in this, where would I put my mp3 and phone?”

Before eating breakfast, we gave a big bow to Grandma. Alex, remembered the bows from the temple, and asked me to show him how to do this new one. He followed my lead and even though he looked very clumsy, my grandma’s face lit up with appreciation. We ate the bulgogi that Alex prepared and the galbi and japchae that Mom made. The bulgogi was a bit salty but still good. It’s hard to go wrong with grilled meat.

114 Let’s go Korea!

I brought out the family photo album after the meal because I wanted to show Alex when Koreans normally wear Hanbok. I showed him pictures of my parents’ wedding, Sanghyun and my first birthday, and Lunar New Year’s Day.
“Wow, those colors are wild. It’s like the mix in the Korean spirit you were talking about. The ceremonies are so formal and serious, but the clothes much more expressive than Western suits and dresses. Colors that I’d never think of putting together look great on Hanbok.” “I think the appeal comes from the curves and edges. They blend the bright colors well.” “It’s too bad that Koreans only wear Hanbok on special occasions. Designers could get as much inspiration here as architects.” “Nowadays there are modern Hanbok. They aren’t as baggy as the old style and the men’s versions even have pockets.” “That’s great!” “Yeah. It’s our responsibility to keep traditions but also make them fit in modern times.” “I know what you mean, Jaehyun.”
Traditional robes of ▼ the king and queen of the Joseon Dynasty

World Heritage in Korea 115

Korea’s Traditional Games
Ssireum is a Korean form of wrestling in which two contestants grab a cloth band that wraps around the waist and one leg and try to knock over the other. The bout is over when any part of the body other than the feet of a contestant touches the ground. Unlike most other sports contested in a ring, ssireum is a nonviolent sport that requires a combination of strength and skill.

Talchum (Mask Dance)
Mask dance is a form of traditional performance. There are different types of mask dances such as the Sandaenori Mask Dance, Hahoe Byeolsin Gut (Hahoe Byeolsin Exorcism Mask Dance), and Bongsan Mask Dance. The Sandaenori Mask Dance is especially colorful because it uses 18 different masks.

Kite Flying
Kite flying is enjoyed by many cultures around the world. Korean kites are rectangular, and thin bamboo strips provide sturdy structure.

Geune is a swing made by hanging ropes from two really tall pillars or trees and attaching a wooden board at the bottom. On Dano (lunar May 5) geune contests were held, and the winner was decided by measuring who could swing the highest.

A Jegi is made by wrapping thin paper around a coin with a hole in the middle and shredding the paper to make it look like a shuttlecock. Jegichagi is a contest to see who can kick the jegi multiple times and keep it in the air the longest.

116 Let’s go Korea!

Let’s Play Yunnori

This game is ever popular during major holidays. Yunnori is basically very simple. Instead of dice or a spinner, the combination of four sticks determines how far to move on the board. The board can be set up anywhere with chalk or a magic market. The bigger the board, the better. The sticks are shaped like small canoes, flat on one side and rounded on the other, with tapered ends. On the bottom (flat) side of one stick is a special mark, called baekdo. Each team has four chips, either black or white. All four chips of one color must go around the board once for the team to win. The number of spaces which a player can move depends on how the sticks land after being tossed. When one flat side is up and three rounded sides are up, the combination allows one step forward. Two up and two down allow a forward movement of two spaces. Three flat up and one rounded up is good for three spaces. If all the sticks are flat side up, the move ahead is four spaces. Finally, if all the sticks are rounded side up, it allows a move of five steps. Chips move separately, unless two of the same color land on the same space and then move together. It is possible for all four to travel in a pack, but the danger lies in being caught and “eaten” by the other team’s chips, whenever a

chip lands on a space occupied by the other team’s chip, the captured chip must go all the way back to the beginning and the capturer gets another turn. The board is set up with shortcuts. Normally, the chips must move around counterclockwise. There is a special circle, so that diagonal shortcuts are possible depending on where your opponents lie. Each team is given only four chips no matter how many are in the group. The captain of each side must coordinate the strategies of avoiding, attacking, and doubling to bring all four chips around the fastest. Yunnoripan ▼

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Important Korean Holidays
New Year’s Day (January 1)
Some Koreans celebrate the New Year on this official holiday, while many more celebrate on the lunar calendar’s New Year’s Day, Seollal.

Chuseok or Harvest Festival Day

(Fifteenth Day of the Eighth Month by the Lunar Calendar)
This is one of the great national holidays of the year. On this day a feast is prepared and families hold memorial services at family grave sites. Viewing the full moon is a feature of the evening.

Seollal (First Day of the First Month by the Lunar Calendar)
It is one of the most important holidays in Korea like Christmas in the Western world. Family members who live scattered around the nation reunite on this day to spend time together. This holiday features family rituals honoring ancestors and many traditional games.

National Foundation Day (October 3)
Called Gaecheonjeol Day, this is day when Dangun founded the first Korean kingdom.

Christmas (December 25)
Christianity took hold in Korea only in the 19th century, so this day has less religious significance. Just as everywhere else, though, it is a time to exchange greetings and gifts. Grandfather Santa, as he is called in Korea, is somewhat smaller in build than his Western counterpart.

Samil Independence Movement Day
(March First)
This day marks the beginning of the independence movement against the Japanese during their colonial rule. On this day in 1919, leaders of social and religious circles gathered at a park in central Seoul and declared Korea’s independence from the Japanese colonialists.

Buddha’s Birthday (Eighth Day of the Fourth
Month by the Lunar Calendar)
Solemn rituals are held at Buddhist temples across the country. The day’s festivities reach their climax when monks and laymen march through city streets with beautiful paper lanterns.

Children’s Day (May 5)
Children are the center of attention on this day as their parents shower them with presents and take them on outings.

Liberation Day (August 15)
Taegeukgi, the Korean national flag, fly from nearly every building on this day, which marks the end of the 35-year Japanese colonial rule in 1945.

118 Let’s go Korea!

Making Korean Food
Kimchi, pickled fermented vegetables, is a staple of Korean food. The spicy relish can be made with a number of different vegetables but is most commonly made with cabbage, turnips, and cucumbers. The vegetables are mixed with garlic, onions, ginger, salt, red pepper, and salted fish or shrimp and allowed to ferment anywhere from a few days to many months. In late November, Korean housewives used to pickle great vats of kimchi to feed their families during the long winter months.

Recipe - Baechu kimchi

1. Ingredients for kimchi.

2. Slice and wash Chinese cabbages and soak in salt.

3. Clean the bottoms of cabbages.

4. Mix seasonings with salted and fermented fish.

5. Spread seasonings evenly between leaves.

6. Wrap the whole cabbage and store in cool place.

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Bulgogi (marinated, grilled beef)

Because beef was so rare in the past, dishes like bulgogi and galbi, marinated short ribs, were served only on special occasions. Today, a trip to a galbi house is the equivalent of going out for a nice steak dinner. Fortunately, bulgogi is easy to make at home.

· Marinate 2.5kg of sliced beef sirloin, with 3 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons of rice wine. The sauce is made of 4 tablespoons of soy sauce, a dash of black pepper, 1.5 tablespoons of minced garlic, 3 tablespoons of chopped green onions, 2 tablespoons of sesame oil, and 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds. · The secret of making delicious bulgogi is to tenderize the meat with sugar and wine. If you don’t have rice wine, try sherry, or even cola. · Let the beef marinate for half an hour while

preparing the sauce. · Pour the sauce over the beef and rub so that each piece is thoroughly covered. · The more you knead the meat in the sauce, the better it will taste. Marinate for at least an hour in the refrigerator. And that’s it! · Korean restaurants use a dome-shaped grill that let’s the juices drip off to the sides when grilling. Save the drippings. They are delicious mixed into white rice.

120 Let’s go Korea!

Bibimbap (rice mixed with vegetables)

Bibimbap is a meal in a bowl. Bibim means to mix, which is how to eat the artfully arranged layers of julienned vegetables, egg, and meat with sauce over rice. Bibimbap is the representative dish of southwestern Jeolla-do Province, famed for its arts, culture, and cuisine. But there is no geographical boundary in Koreans’ love of bibimbap. The beauty of bibimbap is that almost any vegetable can be used. Cucumbers, spinach, carrots, Korean radish, mushrooms, watercress, and other leafy vegetables, anything that can add to the mix of color and texture.

to remove water. Cut, and saute lightly. · For protein, place an egg sunny side up on each serving. Beef, sliced into small strips and sauted with minced garlic, chopped green onions, a few drops of soy sauce, and a couple of pinches of sugar can also be added. · Make a bed of rice in each bowl. Arrange some of each ingredient carefully in sections radiating from the center. Top with the ground beef, and over that lay the egg. · To eat, mix all the ingredients vigorously. Add red pepper paste and sesame oil to taste to keep everything moist.

· Wash all the vegetables. Peel and julienne all root vegetables. Saute them separately in a lightly oiled pan and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. For spinach, boil it briefly. Drain, and then saute as above. Leafy vegetables can just be cut into bite-size strips. · Remove mushroom stems and julienne and saute them. For the cucumber, peel and salt

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visual Information
History of Korea
Korea’s history started from Gojoseon (2333 B.C.). Through its 5,000-year history, Korea has developed a truly distinct culture while interacting with the larger nations surrounding it.
Three Kingdoms Era Silla (57 B.C.- A.D. 935) Baekje (18 B.C.- A. D. 660) Goguryeo (37 B.C.- A.D. 668)

Confederated Kingdoms of Samhan (Three Han States)

Paleolithic Age Neolithic Age

Hunting Scene in Dancing Figure Tomb (replica) This scene portrays warriors on horseback hunting deer and tigers. Hunting was a very important activity for the welfare of the state during the Goguryeo Kingdom (37 B.C.-A. D. 668)

Gojoseon Bronze Age

Iron Age Buyeo

Gaya Kingdom (42-562)

B.C. 5000 2000 1000 500 200 100 A.D. 200 300 400 500

Bronze Age Warring States Era (475-221) Qin Dynasty (221-206) Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C.-25A.D.) San GuoEra (220-280) Jin Dynasty (265-420) Sui Dynasty (581-618) Nan Bei Chao Dynasties (420-589)

Shang Dynasty (166-1046) Zhou (1046-256)

Spring and Autumn Era (770-476)

Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220)

Early Mesopotamia Egyptian Kingdoms Julius Caesar Birth of (101-44) Jesus Christ Mohammed (570-632)

Greek Civilization The Foundation of Rome (735)

Socrates (470-399) Alexander the Great (356-323) First Punic War (264-241) Second Punic War (219-201) Third Punic War (149-146)

Anglo-Saxons established in Britain (449) Christianity Established as State Religion of Roman Empire (392) Roman Empire split in two (395)

Unified Silla Kingdom (676-935)

Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910)

Seokguram Grotto Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392) Hunminjeongeum A primer for teaching Hangeul, the Korean alphabet created by the Joseon Dynasty’s fourth ruler, King Sejong the Great (14181450) 2002 Korea-Japan World cup (2002)

The Deposotories for the Tripitaka Koreana Woodblocks Tripitaka Koreana is the oldest and most comprehensive compilation of Buddhist scriptures in existence today. It was carved on 81,340 woodblocks during the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392). Balhae Kingdom (698-926)

24th Olympic games, Seoul (1988) Korean War (1950-53) The establishment of Republic of Korea (1948)

Daehan Empire













Tang Dynasties (618-907)

Song Dynasty (960-1270) Wu Dai Dynasties (907-960)

Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) Ming Dynasty (1368-1644)

Qing Dynasty (1616-1911)

Establishment of the People’s Republic of China (1949)

Establishment of the Republic of China (1912)

First Crusade (1096-99)

The One Hundred Years’ War (1344-1434) Marco Polo(1254-1324) Mangna Carta (1215)

World War I (1914-18) World War II (1939-45) American Civil War (1861-65) American Revolution (1776) French Revolution (1789-1793) The Thirty Years’ War (1618-48)

Charles the Great crowned first Holy Roman Emperor (800)

Hegira (622) and beginning of lslamic era

Matin Luther launched the Reformation (1517) Gutenberg’s Press (1434) Columbus discovered America (1492)

visual Information
Korean Historical Remains
(700,000 years ago – 400 BC)

Pre-historic Period

Jumeok Dokki (Hand axe), Paleolithic Age Bitsalmunui Togi (Comb-pattern pottery), Neolithic Age Bipahyeong Donggeom (Mandolin-shaped dagger), Bronze Age

Bronze Ritual Artifact, Bronze Age

The Three Kindoms and Gaya
(57 BC - AD 668)

Hunting Scene, Goguryeo

Bangasayusang (Gilt-bronze Maitreya), Goguryeo

Geumjegwansik (A pair of gold ornaments for diadem of the king), Baekje

Baekjegeumdongdaehyangno (Gilt-bronze incense burner), Baekje

Horse Rider-shaped Vessels, Silla

Gold Crown, Silla

visual Information
Unified Silla and Balhae
(668 - 935)

Mugujeonggwangdaedaranigyeong (Pure Light Dharani Sutra), Unified Silla

Inmyeonmunuiwadang (Eolgulmunuisumaksae), Unified Silla

Statue of the Main Buddha of Seokguram Grotto, Unified Silla

Dabotap (Many Treasures Pagoda), Unified Silla

(918 - 1392)


Palmandaejanggyeong (Tripitaka Koreana woodblock)

Buljo Jikjisimcheyojeol

Celadon Pitcher in the Shape of a Tortoise

Inlaid Celadon Bottle

Wine Ewer

visual Information
(1392 - 1909)


‘Clearing after the Rain on Inwang Mountain,’ by Jeong Son (1676 - 1759) ‘A Beauty,’ by Shin Yun-bok (1758-?)

‘Portrait of Chae Che-gong (1720-99)’ aged 70, by Yi Myong-ki (1760-1820) ‘Evil-repelling Tiger,’ artist unknown, 18 C.

‘Puppies, Birds and Flowers,’ by Yi Am (early 16 C.)

Uigwe (The Royal Protocols) Blue and White Porcelain Vase with Bamboo and Pine Tree Design Buncheong Flask with Peony Design

Seungjeongwon Ilgi

Joseon Wangjosillok

Travel Information
Gyeongju Tour

Travel Information
Gyeongju Tour

Gyeongju National Museum
At the Gyeongju National Museum, one can get a complete view of the Silla Dynasty at a glance. The museum contains 100,000 pieces of valuable relics recovered in and around Gyeongju. Among them, 2,500 items are always on exhibit.

The Divine Bell of King Seongdeok
This bronze bell, called “The Divine Bell of King Seongdeok” was cast in memory of King Seongdeok and having very elegant and tense looks, together with a crystal-clear and eloquent sound, it is by far the best of its kind.

The Cheomseongdae Observatory, one of the oldest astronomical observatories of its kind in East Asia. The observatory consists of 362 stones which correspond to the days in a year and the number of basic stars.

Anapji Pond
This pond was a splendid decoration for the Silla palace. About 30,000 treasures, including roof tiles, earthenware, metallic handicrafts and images of Buddha were excavated from this pond.

Hwangryongsa Temple
Hwangryongsa Temple is the largest one from the Silla Dynasty. Among its treasures were a nine-story wooden pagoda, Geumdong Buddha Triad, Geumdang mural by Solgeo, and a huge bronze bell. All that remains is a giant protective stone, to remind people of the magnificent scale of that time.

Bunhwangsa Temple
Bunhwangsa Temple was the home of many Silla monks, such as Wonhyo and Jajang. It was founded in 634 A.D. (in the 3rd year of Queen Seondeok). On the temple grounds, you can find a stone pagoda built with rocks shaped like bricks and the Hwajaengguksabi Monument in Wonhyo’s honor.

Daereungwon Cheonmachong
the tombs recall the atmosphere of the ancient capital of Silla. The tombs create a panoramic scene in their clusters. They were constructed during the early stages of ancient Silla and have yielded many treasures.

Bulguksa Temple
Bulguksa Temple, built with a combination of stylish architecture, Buddhist spirit and natural surroundings, symbolizes Buddha’s land on earth. Bulguksa Temple was built in the 10th year of King Gyeongdeok,751 A.D. by Kim Dae-seong, in memory of his parents. It was restored to its original condition in 1973. It was designated as a UNESCO Cultural Heritage on December 6, 1995.

Seokgulam Grotto
Seokgulam Grotto consists of a square antechamber, a round chamber and a passage connecting the two chambers. It represents the universe, with heaven round and the earth square. Sculptured in relief on granite slabs, flanking the wall Buddha and the Buddhist world, are eight guardian demons, two Vajurapanis (guardian gods of the temple) and four ferocious guardians.

Tomb of General Kim Yu-sin
Having made great contributions to the unification of the three main kingdoms of Korea, General Kim was posthumously awarded the honorary title of King Heungmu and was buried in a tomb as splendid as that of kings. The tomb is encircled with stone lions and stone rails, engraved with the twelve animal figures of the Oriental zodiac.

Daewangam Rock
Daewangam Rock is the underwater tomb of King Munmu who promised to become a sea dragon to protect Silla from Japanese invaders. King Munmu began construction of Gameunsa Temple and it was completed by his son, King Sinmun. King Munmu willed that his body be cremated in a simple funeral ceremony and that his remains be buried under the large rock off the east shore at Gampo.

Yangdong Folk Village
Old-fashioned, pantiled-roofed houses remain intact in this quaint little village, with the atmosphere of Joseon Dynasty all around. As a typical village of Yangban (nobility) during the Joseon Dynasty, there are more than 150 households, pavilions, schools of Joseon and ancestral shrines. They are all laden with antiquity.

Chapter 5

Future of Korea

From talking to Sanghyun and Jaehyun, I learned that Korean students‛ passion for education and their parents‛ strong support and encouragement have helped transform Korea into a global player today. Korea is full of possibilities.

Parents’ devotion to their children
I’m having a blast in Korea. Sanghyun’s family has been awesome, and Jaehyun especially helpful. He’s always willing to talk to me and answer questions when Sanghyun isn’t sure about something. I’m going back to the States in a couple of days, so we decided to stay at home today and relax. Today we’re watching a Korean league baseball game on TV and eating watermelon.
“You know, they didn’t teach much about Korea in Canada and the States, but I’ve learned just how far the country has come since I came here.” “I’m glad.” “When we studied Korea it was mainly a few paragraphs about the war, but I’ve seen just how modern
▼ Korea leads the world in ship construction

and energetic the country is and how proud you are of your heritage and how far back it goes. It’s amaz-

136 Let’s go Korea!

ing how the Korea covered in school books is so different from what I see.” “When I studied about Korea in the States, I had a similar feeling. But I think I know the reason. The country was dirt poor after the war, but now our economy produce more than Australia. The growth has been so fast that many countries’ textbooks just couldn’t keep up. And coverage has always favored the biggest East Asian players, China, Japan and Russia.” “Why do you think Korea was able to develop so quickly?” “I think it is mainly due to Korean parents’ great passion and willingness to sacrifice for their children’s education. No matter what the circumstances, they have always prioritized education.” “I saw a story on the news about Korean parents living apart so their children could get a better education. I can’t understand why. Isn’t the happiness of the family also important?” “The 21st century is being built upon knowledge. The countries able to compete intellectually will become

Hyundai car plant ▲ in Alabama

A human-like robot, HUBO ▼

Future of Korea 137

Zeal for education

the global forces in the future. Korean parents know that well and are doing everything they can to make sure that their children grow up confident and able to compete. We get family happiness from that security.”

Korean parents strive to provide better education and better opportunities for their children and many end up sending their children to a hakwon for extra studying. A hakwon is a supplement to the public education and provides lectures for English, mathematics, and other academic subjects. Some parents send their children abroad in order for them to acquire better proficiency in a foreign language. Though in the past most flocked to the United States, Korean students are traveling to diverse countries depending on the academic subject of interest.

As I listened to Sanghyun, I came to think of Korea as a country whose people share a common desire and can accomplish much together. They bring the country immense power and potential. Now I understand why there are so many Korean students in the United States. I think it’s amazing how many come to the top schools in the States, considering South Korea is not a big country. After listening to Sanghyun, I came to appreciate Korea’s intangible power.

� 138 Let’s go Korea! ▲ Semiconductor Manufacturing Scene

KOREASAT 5, also known as MUGUNGWHA 5, ▲ Future of Korea 139 a South Korean geostationary satellite was launched at 03:27 UT on 2006 August 22

Traditional Korean Schools

Challenges and opportunities in the modern world
On Saturday afternoon, Sanghyun and I came to Jamsil to buy souvenirs. We visited the theme park Lotte World and its museum of traditional Korean culture

Seodang, Seowon, and Hyanggyo were education institutions in the countryside. Seodang was equivalent to the present day elementary school; Seowon and Hyanggyo were similar to middle and high schools, respectively. Also, Seowon and Seodang were private schools, while Hyanggyo was a public institution. Seowon and Hyanggyo were not only places of education but also memorials for great past scholars such as Confucius and Yi Hwang.

before heading for the rides. As we waited in line, I practiced my Korean with the kids around me. They were excited and complimented and encouraged me, but when my Korean came up short, they switched to English.
“Sanghyun, a lot of Korean students are good at speaking English.” “Of course. It’s also another product of education. They learn English for many years in school and take evening classes in private schools. Even though it’s difficult, many students give up their free time to study till late at night. Their English is the result of a lot of time and energy. It’s not just English; Korean middle and elementary school students are often at or near the top on international tests that measure problem solving and math skills.” “At our school, Korean students are best at math. I didn’t know there was so much effort behind that.” “Nothing is free in this world. Korean students really work hard to gain an upper hand. Even in Korea, many science and math classes are taught with English textbooks, so they will always be at a disadvantage to native English speakers unless they learn the language well.”

140 Let’s go Korea!

While I was talking to Sanghyun, I heard some language that I didn’t recognize.
“Sanghyun, that doesn’t sound like Korean.” “Yeah you’re right. I think he’s a student from Mongolia. The most popular study abroad destination for Mongolian students is Korea. There are over 1,500 Mongolian students studying here. That’s a huge number considering that the entire population of Mongolia is under 3,000,000.” “It must be hard to study in a country that speaks another language. I think you guys are brave.” “They’re not that different from you. Even though it might be difficult at times, there is fun in challenging yourself in a foreign country. Students in Korea are going abroad to China and Southeast Asia as well as the States. Of course, some students come from those countries to study in Korea.” “Sanghyun, it’s starting to feel like the world is really becoming one global community. Students are studying abroad more than ever.” “Yeah, I really feel it because I can just video chat with my parents in Korea when I’m back in school and see them from halfway around the world.” “I’m glad we live in these times. It’s exciting to think that in ten years we’ll be working to improve an even more globalized world.”
Village school at ▼ Cheonghak-dong Folk Village

Future of Korea 141

▲ Many Korean students are proficient in English

World famous Koreans: Nam June Paik, Sarah Chang, and Harold Hongju Koh
Sanghyun and I talked about what we wanted to become in the future and different people that would be good mentors.
“Sanghyun, who are some Koreans that you consider global leaders?” “You said you wanted to study at Yale, right? Well the Dean of Yale Law School is Harold Hongju Koh. He’s an expert in human rights, and he’s lived with the mission to service the needy around him. He’s a brave man who places the dignity of man before everything else.”
Nam June Paik Art Center ▼ Harold Hongju Koh, Dean ▲ of Yale Law School

Future of Korea 143

“I’ll do a Web search on him when I’m back in the States. I thought you’d say the secretary-general of the U.N. He’s Korean, isn’t he?” “Yup. Ban Ki-moon is a great inspiration. He had dreamed of being a diplomat since he was a kid, and now he’s working hard for world security and peace. He also pushes hard for human rights in troubled countries.” “Most famous Koreans that I know are artists. My father majored in visual arts and was a big fan of Nam June Paik. He said that all artists should always challenge themselves like Paik to stay creative.” “Oh, then you should see the memorial hall built here for Paik and his art. As the father of video art, he was one of the leading experimental artists of the last century. I agree with your dad: There’s a lot to learn from him.” “I’m also a big fan of the soprano Sumi Jo and the violinist Sarah Chang. I think such people that are
▼ U.N. Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon

very active overseas broaden our perspective of the world.”





more prominent Koreans and realized something important about achieving your dreams. People who succeed often have a desire to serve others as part of their goals and efforts. When I said this to Sanghyun, he looked at

144 Let’s go Korea!

me as if I had said the obvious.
“Korean parents always stress one thing as they raise their children. It’s the message to become someone who helps others.”

Korea International Coop- ▲ eration Agency (KOICA)

I thought to myself that the world needs people who are creative and open-minded. I also felt the importance of being tolerant of other people’s cultures and ideas. Through this trip, I felt and learned many things. My world view has broadened to include this country in Asia’s Far East.
“Sanghyun, I think this trip was very valuable. From now on, the world will need more people with open minds and hearts. And I now know that these qualities come from being able to accept and understand cultures and heritages different from our own.”

Future of Korea 145

146 Let’s go Korea!

Sanghyun and I have been sitting here for hours now talking our future plans. I don’t think either of us will get a clear answer from this, but we both agree that we’re one step closer to becoming a successful adult because we understand and have tolerance for others.

Future of Korea 147

Famous Korean Artists

Nam June Paik (1932~2006)
Nam June Paik was born in Korea in 1932 and studied abroad in Germany and Japan. This innovative artist came to be known as the first video artist. In June 1996, Nam June Paik had a stroke, which paralyzed the left side of his body. Despite his condition, Paik continued his artistic career, and the German monthly magazine “Capital” named Paik the eighth most prominent artist in the world. In 1998, he received the Kyoto Prize for his work in combining video and modern art. In January 2006, Paik passed away in his home in the U.S.

Sumi Jo (1962~ )
Sumi Jo, a Korean soprano, made her operatic debut in 1986 as Gilda in Verdi’s Rigoletto. In 1993, she won the La Siola d’Oro Award as Best Soprano of the Year, and in 1992 she received a Grammy Award for her lead role in “Die Frau ohne Schatten” (The Woman Without a Shadow). Recently in 2008, Sumi Jo was also given the Puccini Award.

148 Let’s go Korea!

Sarah Chang (1980~ )
Sarah Chang started playing the violin at age four, and less than a year later, she was playing in orchestras around Philadelphia. When she was eight, Sarah auditioned for Zubin Mehta and Riccardo Muti, who requested that she play with the New York Philharmonic and the Philadelphia Orchestra. In 1992, Sarah Chang became the youngest person ever to win the Avery Fisher Career Grant, which helped publicize her incredible talents.

Ahn Eak-tai (1906-1965)
A classical composer and conductor, Ahn Eak-tai was born in Pyongyang. He studied music in Japan and the U.S. and conducted for many esteemed orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic and the Berlin Philharmonic. In 1936, he composed the Korean national anthem. Ahn’s most prominent work is “Symphonic Fantasy Korea.”

Future of Korea 149

visual Information
Study in Korea
Korea continues to attract international students who are inspired by the beauty and traditions of Korea or want to deepen their knowledge about the country. Some come to Korea for a short time, just out of curiosity or to study Korean language; others enroll in a regular academic program for an undergraduate, graduate, or a Ph.D. degree. Numerous scholarship programs are available in Korea to help international students finance their studies.

Admission Procedures
Since academic programs and the school year start in March in Korea, students must check the academic starting date the previous year and make necessary arrangements a year prior to the start of the academic year. Information can be obtained through Korea Study Fair or from the websites of the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development (www.studyinkorea.go.kr) or individual universities. After deciding which university to attend, students must submit their application package before being admitted by the school. Then, after admission, they can visit the Korean Embassy or a Korean consulate for a visa. For more information on visa requirements, visit the website of the Korea Immigration Bureau (www.immigration.go.kr).

Korea Education System
AGE 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 PhD Special School Higher Education Graduate School (MA Dgree) University (Bachelor Degree) Secondary Education High School Middle School Special School Civil Education School Various Middle Schools Special School National Open High School Technical High School Various High Schools Junior College (2-3years) Industrial University University of Education Technical University Distant University National Open University Special School Primary Education Elementary School Special School 1 2 3 4 5 6 1 2 3 1 2 3 1 2 3 4 1 2 1 2 3 Pre-school Education Kindergarden Special School Cumulative Years Curriculum Major General Curriculum Special Curriculum School Year

Travel Information
Educational Tour

DMZ Tours


s part of the armistice ending the 1950-53 Korean War, South and North Korea agreed to pull their troops two kilometers away from the truce line. This created a 4-km-wide demilitarized zone (DMZ) running 248 km (155 miles) across the peninsula. It has become the most heavily armed border in the world. As one of the last relics of the Cold War, the DMZ attracts a great deal of public interest. Korea DMZ tourist sites have been created to quench peoples’ curiosity on this unique area where tension and peace coincide. These sites are especially popular among foreign tourists.

Dorasan Station


Imjingak Pyeonghoa-nuri Park

Location: Paju-si, Imgingak, Gyeonggi-do Program
· Imjingak
Imjingak was built in 1972 with the hope that someday unification would be possible. Three-storied Imjingak is surrounded by Unification Park and North Korea Center.

· The 3rd Tunnel
The 3rd tunnel was discovered on October 17, 1978. It is located 52km from Seoul. Approximately 10,000 soldiers could have move through this tunnel in 1 hour.

· Dorasan Station
Dorasan Train Station is the northernmost Gyeongui-seon (Seoul-Sinuiju) Line train station in South Korea. From this observation platform, North Korean military personnel are visible.

· Bridge of Freedom
The bridge is the only remaining legacy of peace in the Korean War as it holds the symbolic significance of the “Return to Freedom.”

( Paju City Hall 82-31-940-4114

8 en.paju.go.kr

Cheonghak-dong Village School
he village school camp at Cheonghak-dong is centered on learning manners and respect for elders. Since its inception, a Korean village school wasn’t just a place of academia for children; it was a place of learning the virtues of life, self, and community. Jirisan Mountain gave a great environment for learning the science and philosophies of living amongst nature. Cheonghak-dong camp is a modernized version of the traditional Korean village schools, and it offers a variety of programs such as a meditation course and an etiquette learning class. The program is available during summer and winter vacations and as an alternative school as well.


Experience of Gungdo

Cheonghak-dong Museum

Folk Village

Location: Hadong-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do Program
· Etiquette: learning how to deep bow, phone etiquette, tea-ceremony etiquette, dining etiquette · Humanity: meditation, calligraphy, mental training, candlelight ceremony · Language: Fundamental Chinese · Experience: tour of Cheonghak-dong Simsungung, pansori, balsam nail dyeing, water recreation, bamboo water pistols, farming, baking potatoes and sweet potatoes, natural dyeing, pottery making · Traditional games: kite flying, seesawing, board game, Chinese chess, swing, jump ropes, arrow-toss game, taekkyeon · Miscellaneous: insect collecting, talent show Yennal Seodang
( 82-55-882-7177 8 www.chenghak.co.kr

Myeongsim Seodang
( 82-55-882-7042 8 www.myuongsimseodang.com

( 82-55-884-1020 8 www.gomokdang.co.kr

Seulgi Seodang
( 82-55-882-7075 8 www.islgi.org

Gounwon Seodang
( 82-55-884-7002 8 www.kounwon.co.kr

Susinjeong Seodang
( 82-55-884-6179 8 www.susin.co.kr

Cheongrim Seodang
( 82-55-883-8077 8 www.chunglim.org

( 82-55-883-5970 8 www.chunghag.co.kr

Unbong Seodang
( 82-55-883-5142 8 www.iseodang.co.kr

( 82-55-883-5152 8 www.cheunghak.co.kr

Travel Information
Ceramic Art Village in Icheon


n Icheon (or Ichon) an hour’s drive from Seoul is a large community of ceramic artists. Tours to this art village provide visitors a chance to make their own piece of pottery while learning the steps needed to turn a lump of clay into a beautiful piece of art. If unsatisfied with your own handmade souvenir, there are plenty of shops carrying a range of ceramic goods large enough to satisfy all tastes and budgets. Icheon is also home to a major ceramics festival and museum.

Firing a Piece

Ceramic Kiln

Creating Ceramic Art

Icheon-si, Gyeonggi-do

· Presentation on Korean traditional pottery (history, characteristics) · How to make ceramics with a potter’s wheel · Making your own pottery under the supervision of a potter · Lunch –a visit to an exposition hall and shopping · A Visit to the Ceramics Museum or World Ceramics Center

( 82-70-8232-2299
 ichontour@ichontour.com 8 www.ichontour.com

Suncheon Bay


uncheon Bay on the south coast in Jeollanam-do Province is gaining popularity as an eco-tourist destination. The pristine estuary is the winter habitat to rare birds like the hooded crane, white stoke, blackfaced spoonbill and a white heron. In addition thousands of migratory birds make stops at the bay. The Marine Fisheries Department declared the area protected wetlands in December 2000 and had it registered in the International Network for Preserving Cranes in 2004. In January 2006, Suncheon Bay became the first Korean wetlands to be part of the Ramsar Convention, an international agreement to protect swamps and wetlands vital to the preservations of migratory birds. The dense reeds and tidal flats teeming with life along Suncheon Bay not only provide birds important shelter and nourishment, the habitat is strikingly beautiful. Korean photographers have voted shots of the fading sun reflected in the sinuous curves the streams that feed the bay make across its mudflats at low tide one of the best sunset shots on the peninsula.

Suncheon Bay

Crab at Suncheon Bay

Suncheon Bay at Sunset


Suncheon Bay, Jeollanam-do

· Sensational watercolor trip Ecological Park, making natural art, Suncheon Bay cruise, making kimchi, Experience Suncheon Bay S sea road and sunset, Nakan-eub Fortress, Korean paper art experience, Seonamsa Temple, tea ceremony experience . · Biology study Trip - Environment Experience Course: Seonamsa Temple, Nakan-eub Fortress, Dolmen Park, Myeongseolwon tea ceremony experience. - Biology Experience Course: Suncheon Bay Ecology Hall, mountain village experience at Cheongsogol.

( Suncheon City Cultural Publicity 82- 61-749-3328/82-61-749-3742

8 www.suncheonbay.go.kr

Travel Information
Cheonsuman Bay: Heaven of Birds


heonsuman Bay is Korea’s largest habitat of about 320 species of 700,000 migratory birds (max. per day). Cheonsuman Bird Watching Fair held in an ecological treasure chest field with a tremendous array of beauty. Wild geese filling a field, a beautiful dance of about 300,000 Baikal Teals, a bewitching figure of some 50 Eurasian Spoonbills, mallards, and storks will show you an incredible world of birds. Your spirits will also soar in Cheonsuman Bay amid all the beautiful flying scenes. You will see a new world of nature in Korea’s best bird watching fair. Show your children the mystery and preciousness of life in living observatory.

Seosan Cheonsuman Bay

Migratory Birds

Seosan Cheonsuman Bay

Location: Seosan, Chungcheongnam-do Program
· Visit Cheonsuman Ecological Center · Birds watching tour · Tea party · Enjoy local delicacies · Make sotdae · Kite making · Earthen totem pole making

Date: October
( 82-41-669-7744

8 www.seosanbird.com

Taekwondo Tour
he Taekwondo experiential program for foreigners is held three times a day (10:30, 13:30, and 15:30, except Mondays) in Gyeonghuigung Palace until December. Each 90minute session accommodates up to 40 people. The sessions each offer a different program: the 10:30 session covers basic taekwondo moves; the 13:30 session, self-defense techniques; and the 15:30 session, breaking techniques. Participants can choose one or more sessions or take part in all three. Everyone receives a taekwondo certificate and badge upon completion of the session. In addition to the taekwondo experiential program, why not try the Taekwondo Cultural Performance, which is staged on the lawn of Gyeonghuigung Palace every Wednesday and Saturday from 13:30 to 15:00 until December this year. Events include nori madang (traditional folk performance), taekwondo demonstrations and classes, and Korean traditional music. In particular, the Taekwondo Program features a group of top taekwondo masters from Kukkiwon who will demonstrate breaking and self-defense techniques. Prior to the event, taekwondo photos will be exhibited from 10 am, and visitors will have a chance to try on a taekwondo uniform.


Taekwondo Tour

Taekwondo Show

Taekwondo Show

Location: Gangnam Subway Station ( Seoul Subway No.2) walk for 15-minute Program
· Meditation · Basic Techniques · Self-Defense Skills · Breaking Skills · Matching

( Kukkiwon 82-2-567-1058

8 www.kukkiwon.or.kr

Travel Information
Temple Stay
o play a leading active role in the cultural age of the 21st century, the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism’s Temple Stay Division concentrates activities on traditional cultural affairs and on the development and fostering of resources. The division is making rapid progress in fulfilling this role on the basis of Korean Buddhism’s history and cultural resources, both tangible and intangible. In particular, through the Temple Stay program, the Temple Stay Division offers participants the opportunity to experience traditional Korean Buddhist culture. Simultaneously, the program provides a solid foundation for the popularization and appreciation of traditional culture in daily life. Currently there are 43 temples participating in the program nationwide. The basic 24hour program (including overnight stay) can be simplified to half-day program (3.5 hours), or extended to 3- and 4-day experiences. Six temples are always open to individual participants while groups may make reservations at any temple all year long.



Devotional Chanting at Yebul, Ceremonial Service
Yebul is a ceremonial service to praise Buddha. This solemn ceremony is held three times a day

Communal Buddhist Meal Service (Barugongyang)
Barugongyang is a unique and special way of eating in Korean temples. At this communal meal practice the meal is eaten in total silence, and not a single grain of rice is wasted.

Zen Meditation (Chamseon)
Zen is known as “Chamseon” in Korean. Chamseon is a form of meditation that allows a person to reflect about oneself.

Tea Ceremony (Dado)
Making and enjoying good tea is one of the practices of the Buddhist religion.

Resevation: eng.templestay.com
Beomeosa Temple Beopjusa Temple Bogwangsa Temple Bongeunsa Temple Busuksa Temple Busan Boeun Paju Seoul Seosan-si 82-51-508-3122~5 www.beomeosa.co.kr 82-43-543-3615 www.beopjusa.or.kr 82-31-948-7700~1 www.bokwangsa.co.kr 82-2-511-6070~4 www.bongeunsa.org 82-54-853-4181 82-41-662-3824 82-54-672-7579 82-61-535-5775 82-32-937-7033 82-41-857-8981 82-54-744-1689 82-51-508-345 82-42-822-9220 82-54-436-6084 82-2-732-5292 82-61-533-3521 82-63-583-3035 82-55-352-1070 82-33-534-7676 82-31-885-2505 82-41-337-6565 82-61-783-7600 82-2 900-4326 82-31-234-0040 82-31-773-3797 82-41-857-1854 www.bongjeongsa.org www.busuksa.com www.chooksersa.org www.daeheungsa.co.kr www.lotuslantern.net www.gapsa.org www.golgulsa.com cafe.daum.net/CulturalActivity www.jakwangsa.org www.jikjisa.or.kr international.jogyesa.or.kr www.mihwangsa.com www.naesosa.org www.pyochungsa.or.kr www.samhwasa.or.kr www.silleuksa.org www.sudeoksa.com www.hwaeomsa.org www.seoulzen.org www.yongjoosa.or.kr www.yongmunsa.org www.youngpyungsa.org

Bongjeongsa Temple Andong-si Chooksersa Temple Bongwha-gun Daeheungsa Temple Haenam-gun Gangwha Lotus Lantern Incheon Gapsa Temple Golgulsa Temple Haeinsa Temple Jakwangsa Temple Jikjisa Temple Jogyesa Temple Magoksa Temple Mihwangsa Temple Naesosa Temple Samhwasa Temple Sileuksa Temple Sudeoksa Temple Whaeomsa Temple Whagyesa Temple Woljeongsa Temple Yongjoosa Temple Gongju-si Gyeongju Hapcheon Daejeon Gimcheon-si Seoul Gongju-si Haenam-gun Buan-gun Donghae-si Yeoju Yeosan Gurye-gun Seoul Hwaseong Geumsansa Temple Gimjae-si

82-63-548-4441~2 www.geumsansa.org 82-55-934-3110,5 www.80000.or.kr/eng

Hongbeopsa Temple Busan

82-41-841-6221,6 www.magoksa.or.kr

Pyochungsa Temple Milyang

Phyeongchang-gu 82-33-332-6664~5 www.woljeongsa.org

Yongmungsa Temple Yangpyeong Youngpyungsa Temple Gongju

Travel Information
Daejeon Science Tour

Expo Park

8 www.expopark.co.kr The Expo Park, with its focus on science and the future, enhances the consciousness of the importance of science in many young people’s minds and upholds the spirit of the ‘93 Expo. In the park, there are many popular pavilions, such as the Space Reconnaissance Flight Hall, the Technopia Hall, the Hanbit Tower, the Earth Hall, the Expo Memorial Hall, the Information and Communication Hall, the Electric Energy Hall, the Natural Life Hall, and the Energy Hall.

Daedeok Science Town

8 www.dtv21.co.kr Daedeok Science Town is an incubator of advanced research in science and technology. Various government and private industry research centers located here are leading Korea into the 21st century, as a high-ranking scientific research nation. In this area of 6849.5 acres in Yuseong-gu in Daejeon, there are many science and education institutes and culture centers, such as the National Central Science Museum, the Currency Museum, Chungnam University, the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology. With the newly reopened Expo Science Park, this complex has developed into a home for science, education, and culture in Korea. Daedeok Science Town was officially named Daedeok Valley in September 28, 2000. Daedeok Valley is expected to play an important role as the ‘Silicon Valley of Asia.’ 8 star.metro.daejeon.kr The Daejeon Observatory offers people opportunities to observe celestial bodies. This observatory is the first of its kind in Korea in terms of accessibility for ordinary people to observe astronomy. The observation of the sun can be made during the day, and during the night observations of other celestial bodies such as planets, nebulas, and clusters of stars, the Miky Way are available through its astronomical telescopes. 8 www.science.go.kr The National Science Museum plays a role as the cradle of scientific education. It has a standing exhibition hall, a special exhibition hall, a research-control hall, a celestial sphere hall, a movie theater, an audio-visual room and a computer room. These facilities contribute to scientific knowledge, to education of people by the accumulation of science and technology, and to popularization of a living science. 8 www.komsep.com/museum/ Located in Daedeok Science Town, the Currency Museum shows not only the 100-year history of national currency but also Olympic commemorative coins and present currency. It was opened in 1988 with almost 80,000 coins and bills from different currencies.

Daejeon Observatory

National Science Museum

Currency Museum

Daejeon Institute of Education Science
Located in an area of more than 49,500m², this Research Institute has training facilities for teachers and various pavilions for exploring life, the universe, solar system, and computers as well as a pavilion for experiencing fundamental science. It offers rich sights to see and enjoy through such imaginary experiences as functional structure of the body, a growth of the fetal life, and a sensor robot.

Daejeon Science Festival
The Science Festival, the largest-scale ever in Korea, is to be held at the Expo Park in Daejeon in August. It will provide a variety of events for visitors with a curious and enthusiastic mind toward science, some of which are science-experiencing programs. As the festival includes programs ranging from practical science to traditional ones visitors, regardless of gender and age, can enjoy the festival. There are about 50 events to attract our interest in science. These events offer opportunities for children and adults to enjoy most scientific fields such as popular imaginary life, three-dimensional film, basic science, and space science. Through the Health Life Event and the Bio Engineering Experience Exhibition that shows the genome of human beings, the festival makes science easily accessible and fun.

Entrance to the Expo Park

Science Festival

Tower of Great Light

( Daejeon Tourist Information Center: 82-42-861-1330

Tourist Division of Daejeon Metropolitan City: 82-42-600-2433 Daejeon Tourist Association: 82-42-226-8413

8 tour.daejeon.go.kr/english


Dear Sangh


one is well. I hope every a so much! my I miss Kore tried to call subway and thought my as in the rough, so I ther day I w The o I t ing th ll wasn’ go service bar ents. The ca checked my par hen I s ubew York’ s oken. But w t ’ work in N hone was br p m don , I’ cell phones er in Korea remembered whole summ t a . having spen around here way. After ed to things us t ble getting ’ having trou ood. I didn is Korean f ut aving v in Korea, b I’e been cr while I was nother thing A much more there were ked it this tes, I wish realize I li in the Sta ents visited m at I’ back eek my par now th r Last w p. The waite ants here. nd bibimba ean restaur Kor albi a red em to eat g nu and orde nd I took th read the me a nI hy he pressed whe have been w was really im t k that might till haven’ rean. I thin eve that I s ything in Ko t ever n’ beli n incredibly essert. I ca s It’ really a ve us free d ga angeul. w to read H r. orgotten ho f nd remembe t to learn a e to a easy alphab to develop in ea was able e that Kor alized that ld me befor on. But I re You to educati t st ent isn’ ju because of d improvem ong nation str t an you developmen l it because s able to fee orea’ rapid K ot be You might n about that.

162 Let’s go Korea!

were raised in that conte xt, but I wa thousands o s able to de f years of tect the history and into the eve heritage em ryday lives bedded of Koreans. I had an e ye-opening experience a chance fo this summe r me to bec r. It was ome more a countries’ ppreciative n cultures, of other philosophie s, and lifes Do you kno tyles. w that Dus tin Hoffma Man?”Watc n movie“L h it if you h ittle, Big aven’ If y stand that t. ou do, you’ I mean this ll underas a big co Korea is Lit mpliment w tle, Big Cou hen I say ntry. Thanks for being a gre at host. Giv gards! e your famil y my reSee you in S eptember, d ude. Alex

Welcom to Korea 163


Dear Alex, Thanks for t time when embered tha e. nd rem nch today a the first tim psticks for as eating lu Iw tal cho iated s ea’ thin me ally apprec ou used Kor rk, but I re y a fo ve just used our culture. You could’ experience nted to me in that you wa d a great ti that you ha !I to hear you as well really glad eling with m I’ trav We lots of fun ing to you. taken a lik orea. I had K v also ust’e andma has , and she m think my gr lunch today re here. She apchae for when you we galbi and j had g both ou devourin membered y re ses you. She said she mis tra concert. last orches g.” f our was“Ariran r the DVD o final piece I showed he it ed that the he thought nows, but s really touch was re rean k students we at every Ko s a song th at foreign It’ g th art rly touchin times the p as particula hed several w watc g the m piece. She d I’ playin playing the h clarinet an ying the atching wit r e you’e pla me. I was w wher y me ti and harmon er at the sa e diversity umpet togeth tr s at’ th erent g that diff realized th eally movin her, and I sr about. It wa that we talk the letter!

164 Let’s go Korea!

instruments producing th eir own sou gether to cr nds could c eate a beau ome totiful harmo ny. The summer is almost o ver already time for tra ! I wish we veling. May had more be you can ada during show me aro winter brea und Cank! I would lo to visit and ve to have a learn abou chance t a differe And Jaehyu nt country n says hello as well. . Enjoy what’ s left of s ummer and school. I’ I’ see you ll m looking f back in orward to y go easy on ou cooking the soy sauc bulgogi, bu e this time. t Later, dude . Sanghyun

Welcom to Korea 165

Korea Tour guide

● ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

Transportations Subway Maps Accommodations Travel Information Center 1330 Korea Travel Phone Tourist Complaint Center Goodwill Guide Contact


Arriving in Korea
International Flights
There are nine international airports in Korea: Incheon, Gimpo, Gimhae, Cheogju, Daegu, Gwangju, Yangyang, Muan and Jeju International Airports. Incheon International Airport services flights to all parts of the world, but the others only service Asia. An airport tax of 17,000 won for international flights and ₩4,000 or ₩5,000 for domestic flights is included in the ticket price. For more details, visit www.airport.co.kr or call 1577-2600

Korea City Air Terminals
City air terminals can be found at the World Trade Center in Seoul and Gimpo Airport. They Provide check-in service and passport inspection. A limousine bus operates between the city air terminals and Incheon International Airport. For further information, visit www.kcat.co.kr

International Sea Routes
Busan in the country’s largest port and second largest city. This international seaport is Korea’s main maritime gateway (mostly to and from Japan). Another international port is Incheon, which operates services to China. Temporary entry is permitted for private cars with the proper documentation belonging to visitors that arrive by ferry. There are also high-speed hydrofoils plying the BusanFukuoka route.

168 Let’s go Korea!

To and From Incheon International Airport
Built on an extensive reclaimed tidal flat between two islands. Incheon International Airport is situated 52km west of downtown Seoul and some 15km off the coast of the port city of Incheon. It operates 24 hours a day. The international airport code is ICN, which is abbreviated “iia” or “IIA.” Limousine buses may be the best way to travel at a minimal expense to and from various places around Korea. Information and tickets are available at the Transportation Information Counters near exits No. 3, 12 on the arrival floor of the passenger terminal.

Domestic Flights
Korea has a well-developed domestic flight network served by Korean Air and Asiana Airlines linking 15 major cities. Korean Air Asiana Airlines
82-1588-2001 82-1588-8000 www.koreanair.com www.flyasiana.com

Domestic Ferry Boats
Boats are one of the most interesting ways to travel around Korea. Ferries ply the waterways between Busan and Jeju, Mokpo and Hongdo, Pohang and Ulleungdo, etc. For further information on sea routes, times or fares, please contact the Korea Shipping Association (Tel: 82-2-6096-2000) or ferry terminals below. Busan Incheon Pohang Geoje
82-51-660-0256 82-32-880-7573 82-54-245-1800 82-55-682-0116

Tongyeong Mokpo Yeosu Jeju

82-55-648-1887 82-61-240-6011 82-61-663-0117 82-64-720-8500

Korea Tour Guide 169

Transportations Trains
Passenger trains operated by the Korean National Railroad are fast, reliable and very inexpensive by international standards. There are the KTX, a super highspeed train operating at speeds of 300km/h, super express Saemaeul and express Mugunghwa. Trains are usually full on weekends and holidays, so reservations and advance purchases are advisable at railroad stations or tour agencies such as Hanjin Travel Service (Tel: 82-2-726-5541) at the KTO Tourist Information Center. Some of the major railroad stations have special ticket counters for overseas visitors. Timetables and fares are available at Korail (www.korail.go.kr).

Long Distance Express Buses
Three express bus terminals serve Seoul: Seoul Express Bus Terminal (Gangnam Gosok Terminal), Dong Seoul Bus Terminal and Sangbong Bus Terminal. Seoul Express Bus Terminal is the main bus depot for trips between Seoul and other major cities. It is on Subway Line 3 or 7 at the station of the same name. Dong Seoul Bus Terminal operates similar routes but with less frequent service and fewer destinations, adjacent to Gangbyeon Station on Subway Line 2. The Sangbong Bus Terminal serves Cheongju, Daejeon, Jeonju or Gwangju and is near Sangbong Station on Subway Line 7. Deluxe express buses are somewhat more expensive than regular buses, but they are popular for their spacious seats and facilities such as mobile phones and in-route movies.

Intercity Buses
Korea has an extensive intercity bus system connecting almost every city and town. These buses do not provide special facilities for foreign travelers, there is no English timetable, and the seats are more cramped than express buses, but for adventurous visitors they are an interesting way to get closer to the spirit and lifestyle of the Korean people. Intercity bus terminals are usually located within express bus terminals in major cities and near the downtown area in small cities.

170 Let’s go Korea!

City Buses
The bus system differs slightly from city to city in Korea. There are two types, regular local and seated coach buses, and both are numbered according to routes. The bus system is so extensive that buses go virtually everywhere in every city. Since bus signs are written only in Hangeul, finding the right bus can be confusing for the first-time visitor. Hotel staff can assist in choosing the correct bus and bus stop for your destination. Fares can be paid as you board with ₩1,000 or a transportation card. To stop the bus at your destination, push one of the stop buttons located along the interior of the bus as you approach your stop. It may be better to let the driver know your destination. Ask someone to write It down for you to hand him as you board. City express coaches called jwaseok buses stop less frequently and travel more rapidly through congested areas. The fare for the city express coach is about ₩1,800.

There are excellent subway train systems in Seoul, Incheon, Gyeonggi-do Province, Busan, Daegu and Gwangju. The subway is the most efficient and convenient way for travelers to get around the city. Station names, ticket windows and transfer signs are all clearly marked in English.

Regular taxis
Fares are ₩1,900 for the first 2 km and 100 won for each additional 144 meters. If the taxi is going 15 kilometer per hour or less, the charge is 100 won per each 35 seconds. The fare between Incheon International Airport and downtown Seoul is usually around 45,000 won, and 55,000 won for the jamsil area (although it could be higher in heavy traffic), plus a 7,400 won toll. Fares increase 20% between midnight and 4 am. Taxi stands are ubiquitous around the cities, and they may also be hailed almost anywhere on the streets except at a bus stop or a congested area.

Korea Tour Guide 171

Subway Map


172 Let’s go Korea!

Korea Tour Guide 173

Subway Map Busan

Other Cities


174 Let’s go Korea!



Korea Tour Guide 175

Accommodations Guest Houses for Backpackers
For foreign tourists visiting Korea, guest houses offer quality lodging services at low prices (around ₩15,000-40,000 per night). Convenient facilities such as microwave oven, gas range, refrigerator, washing machine, air conditioner, TV, PC are available for use and complimentary breakfast will be served. Also, one can experience various cultures and languages with friends from many countries in a friendly atmosphere.
An-guk Guesthouse Arirang Gusethouse Beewon Guesthouse Guesthouse Korea Happy Road Guesthouse HEY Guesthouse Holiday in Korea Guesthouse Hostel Korea Myong Dong Guesthouse Namsan Guesthouse Seoul Backpackers Stay Korea Traveler’s A Young Home 82-2-736-8304 82-2-765-0670 www.angukhouse.com www.beewonguesthouse.com

82-2-3136-2503 www.guesthouseinseoul.com 82-2-3675-2205 www.guesthouseinkorea.com 82-2-3672-0579 www.ihappyroad.com 82-2-948-8810 82-2-762-7406 82-2-752-6363 82-2-336-9026 82-2-927-5546 www.heyguesthouse.com www.hostelkorea.com www.namsanguesthouse.com www.staykorea.co.kr www.guesthouse-homestay.com 82-2-3672-3113 www.holidayinkorea.com 82-2-3672-3113 www.mdguesthouse.com 82-2-3672-1972 www.seoulbackpackers.com 82-2-2285-5511 www.travelersa.com

A homestay, called minbak in Korean, is a great way to experience Korean culture firsthand. There are many families who are willing to share their home and lifestyle with foreigners and in turn, learn about foreign culture and form international friendships. Host families are available who speak English, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, French, and German.

176 Let’s go Korea!

Go Homestay Tel 82-2-6092-8147 Fax 82-2-6092-8150 www.gohomestay.com Korea Youth Exchange Promotion Association Tel 82-2-2665-6717 Fax 82-2-2665-6312 www.kyepa.or.kr LEX Youth Korea Tel 82-2-538-9660 Fax 82-2-568-6738 www.lex.or.kr; lexkor@unitel.co.kr LABO Korea Tel: 82-2-736-0521 Fax 82-2-359-0527 www.labostay.or.kr; labo@labo.or.kr

Hanok Stays
Visitors also can stay at a hanok (traditional Korean house). It is a good opportunity for overseas visitors to experience traditional lifestyle. All furniture, windows and interior structures are reproductions of a traditional Korean house. Traditional sleeping pads and quilts are provided. Jirye Artists’ Colony and Suaedang in Andong have beautiful natural surroundings. Rakgojae, Woorichip Guest House, Seoul Guest House, Tea Guesthouse in Seoul, and Saehwagwan and Yansajae in Jeonju are located inside a hanok village. For Rakkojae, rates are over ₩150,000 per room (breakfast, laundary service, tea ceremony, house made spirit included), but for most others, rates are under ₩100,000 per room (breakfast included).

Bukchon Guest house Friends House Jirye Artists’ Colony Rakgojae Saehwagwan Seoul Guest House Suaedang Tea Guesthouse Woorichip Guest House Yangsajae

82-2-743-8530 82-2-3673-1515 82-54-857-2590 82-2-742-3410 82-63-287-6300 82-2-745-0057 82-54-822-6661 82-2-3675-9877 82-2-744-0536 82-63-282-4959

www.bukchon72.com www.friends-house.com www.jirye.com www.rkj.co.kr www.saehwagwan.com www.seoul110.com www.suaedang.co.kr www.teaguesthouse.com woorichip1043@hanmail.net www.jeonjutour.co.kr

Korea Tour Guide 177


Youth Hostels

There are 69 youth hostels in Korea. All are members of the Korea Youth Hostel Association. They offer reasonably priced rooms for economy-minded travelers and students. The charge for one night ranges from about ₩12,000-25,000, which is much cheaper than any other accommodations.
Korea Youth Hostel Association (02)725-3031 (02)725-3113; www.kyha.or.kr

District Seoul

Name Dreamtel International Seoul Olympic Parktel Ganghwa Kanghwa Namsan Yuseong Gwangsangu Busan Arpina Bearstown Blumonte Gangchon Goyang Greencamp Home Bridge Cabin Home Bridge Hillside Iryeong Shalom Kimpo Riding Club Korean Folk Village Kwanglim Seminar House Sangcheon Eden Songchu Yangji Pine Chiaksan Dreamland Dunnae East Seoul Respia Hyundai Seong-U Mt. Seorak Naksan Pyeong Chang Utopia

Tel. (02)2667-0535 (02)319-1318 (02)410-2114 (032)933-8891 (032)934-7777 (042)822-9591 (062)943-4378 (051)740-3212 (031)532-2534 (031)472-8106 (033)262-1201 (031)962-9578 (031)582-5304 (031)320-8841 (031)320-8849 (031)835-0057 (031)835-8011 (031)987-1110 (031)285-6994 (031)544-0515 (031)581-3900 (031)871-4900 (031)338-2001 (033)732-1600 (033)343-6487 (033)732-4282 (033)340-3000 (033)263-1151 (033)636-7115 (033)430-7847 (033)332-7501 (033)344-3456

Fax. (02)2667-0744 (02)319-1314 (02)410-2101 (032)933-9335 (032)934-7782 (042)823-9965 (062)943-4379 (051)740-3205 (031)540-5075 (031)472-8106 (031)262-1204 (031)962-9579 (031)582-3324 (031)320-9747 (031)320-8843 (031)835-0067 (031)855-7085 (031)987-2978 (031)286-4051 (031)544-0519 (031)581-3900 (031)876-4144 (031)338-7897 (033)732-6888 (033)343-6487 (033)732-4282 (033)340-3171 (033)263-9692 (033)636-7107 (033)671-4620 (033)332-8003 (033)345-7812

Location Gangseo-gu Jung-gu Songpa-gu Ganghwa-gun Ganghwa-gun Yuseong-gu Gwangsan-gu Haeundae-gu Pocheon-gun Anyang Yangju-gun Goyang Gapyeong-gun Yongin Yeoncheon-gun Gapyeong-gun Yangju-gun Gimpo Yongin Pocheon-gun Gapyeong-gun Yangju-gun Yongin Wonju Pyeongchang-gun Sokcho Jaecheon Hongcheon-gun Sokcho Hongcheon-gun Pyeongchang-gun Hongcheon-gun

Incheon Daejeon Gwangju Busan

GyeonggiImjingang do

Gangwon- Kiwa do

178 Let’s go Korea!

Vivaldi Park Yongpyeong Hostel Sobaeksan Sokrisan i-Sarang Suanbo Sajo Maeul Yellimwon Cheonan Sangnok Gongju Gyeryongsan Gapsa Samjeong Buyeo Gohanggun Seonunsan Gyeokpo Chaeseokgang Jirisan Moaksan Haenam Suncheon Bulguksa Chilgok Joil Dongyang

(033)732-3700 (033)335-5757 (043)421-5555 (043)542-5799 (043)846-7661 (043)542-9992 (041)560-9011 (041)852-1212 (041)856-4666 (041)835-3102 (063)561-3333 (063)583-1234 (063)625-1961 (063)548-4401 (061)533-0170 (061)755-5522 (054)746-0826 (054)971-0602 (054)748-6577 (054)743-2202~5 (054)746-0086 (054)746-4761 (054)571-1988 (054)777-5522 (055)867-4510 (043)651-7001 (055)632-7977 (055)637-4950 (055)384-0068 (055)867-4510 (043)846-9200 (043)836-4877 (055)867-4848 (064)739-0114 (064)784-7701 (064)799-8811 (064)721-8233

(033)435-8304 (033)335-6600 (043)421-3860 (043)543-3634 (02)3446-7144 (043)542-9991 (041)560-9019 (041)852-1240 (041)856-4666 (041)835-3791 (063)561-3448 (063)584-8098 (063)625-1961 (063)548-4403 (061)532-1730 (061)755-6298 (054)746-7805 (054)353-6572 (054)748-7624 (054)743-2206 (054)746-4215 (054)745-0001 (054)571-1990 (054)777-5526 (055)867-4216 (043)651-7004 (055)632-4806 (055)633-7840 (055)384-5545 (055)867-4261 (043)845-9107 (043)836-4806 (055)867-4850 (064)739-7552 (064)784-5810 (064)799-8821 (064)721-8235

Pyeongchang-gun Pyeongchang-gun Boeun-gun Boeun-gun Jaecheon Jeungpyeong-gun Cheonan Gongju Gongju Buyeo-gun Gochang-gun Buan-gun Namwon Gimjae Haenam-gun Suncheon Gyeongju Chilgok-gun Gyeongju Gyeongju Gyeongju Gyeongju Mungyeong Gyeongju Hadong-gun Hadong-gun Yangsan Geoje Yangsan NamHae-gun Geoje Namhae-gun Geoje Jeju-do Jeju-do Jeju-do Jeju-do

Chung cheongbuk-do Chung cheongnam-do

Jeollabuk-do Jeollanam-do

Gyeong- Gyeongju Four Season sangbokGyeongju Jeil do
Hangukgwan Tohamsan Cheonghak-dong Chungjuho Woraksan Geoje Mungyeong Saejae

Gyeong- Geoje Haewanaru sangnam- Haeun do Hallyeo
IL_yang Jeung Pyeong Namhae Beach Vill Seogwipo JEJU C&P Jeju Fitness Town Jejusi Myeongdoam


Korea Tour Guide 179

Travel Information Centers
Information and assistance are readily available at the KTO’s Tourist Information Center (TIC) or at information counters in international airports and at major tourist sites. They provide city maps, brochures and information on tours, shopping, dining and accommodations. The hours of operation differ some what around the country, but the KTO’s TIC is open every day from 9 am to 8 pm On the Web, visit www.visitkorea.or.kr
Region TIC
KTO Tourist Information Center Seoul City Tourist Information Center Itaewon Myeong-dong

02-729-9997/9 02-731-6337 02-3785-0942 02-757-0088 02-2236-9135 02-752-1913 02-756-0045 02-6282-0600 02-735-5678 032-743-2600/3 051-973-2800 051-463-5783 051-465-3471 054-772-3843 054-746-4747 054-772-9289 064-742-8866 064-758-7181 064-739-1330


Dongdaemun Market Namdaemun Market Deoksugung Palace Seoul Express Bus Terminal Seoul Metropolitan Rapid Transit Infonet


Incheon International Airport Gimhae International Airport


Busan Railroad Station Busan International Passenger Terminal Gyeongju Railroad Station


Bulguksa Temple Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal Jeju International Airport


Jeju Port Passenger Terminal Jungmun Tourist Center

180 Let’s go Korea!

1330 Korea Travel Phone
When you need English assistance or travel information, just dial 1330 and a billngual operator will help you. If you want information about another region, press the area code for that region before pressing 1330.
Seoul Busan Gwangju Chungcheongnam-do Gyeongsangnam-do Jeju-do 02 051 062 041 055 064 Incheon Ulsan Gyeonggi-do Chungcheongbuk-do Jeollanam-do 032 Daejeon 052 Daegu 031 Gangwon-do 043 Gyeongsangbuk-do 061 Jeollabuk-do 042 053 033 054 063

Tourist Complaint Center
Visitors to Korea who experience any inconveniences or who simply want to offer some advice should call or write to the Tourist Complaint Center operated by the Korea Tourism. Organization: 40 Cheonggyecheonno, Jung-gu, Seoul, 100-180, Korea (Tel 02-735-0101, Fax 02-777-0102)

Goodwill Guide
The KTO Goodwill Guide Service provides interpretation assistance as part of its free tour guide service. Reservations are usually required, but this can be very helpful if you need special help of any kind in Korea. Visit www.goodwillguide. com

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Korea.Net Korean Immigration Service Ministry of Culture & Tourism National Quarantine Service www.korea.net www.immigration.go.kr www.mcst.go.kr/english www.nvrqs.go.kr 82-2-3981-800 82-2-500-9111~2 82-2-3704-9114 82-2-2100-2114 82-31-467-1700

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade www.mofat.go.kr

Korea Tourism Organization Korean National Parks Authority Seoul Culture and Tourism www.visitkorea.or.kr english.knps.or.kr www.visitseoul.net 82-2-7299-600 82-31-441-8511 82-2-2171-2461

Homestay Korea Temple Stay Korea Youth Hostel Korea www.kyepa.or.kr eng.templestay.com kyha.or.kr 82-2-2665-6717 82-2-2011-1972 82-2-725-3031

Korean National Railroad Asiana Airlines Avis Rent A Car Korea Gimpo Airport Korean Air Kumho Rent A Car Incheon International Airport www.korail.go.kr us.flyasiana.com www.avis.co.kr/eng gimpo.airport.co.kr www.koreanair.com www.kumhorent.com/en www.airport.kr/eng/airport 82-2-1544-7788 82-2-1588-8000 82-2-862-2847 82-2-2600-2114 82-2-1588-2001 82-2-797-7000 82-2-1577-2600

Cities & Provinces
Seoul Metropolitan Government Incheon Busani Daejeon Daegu Ulsan Gwangju metro.seoul.kr incheon.go.kr/inpia_en english.busan.go.kr www.metro.daejeon.kr english.daegu.go.kr english.ulsan.go.kr eng.gjcity.net 82-2-1577-1234 82-32-440-3009 82-51-120 82-42-600-3114 82-53-803-3265 82-52-229-2000 82-62-613-2114

182 Let’s go Korea!

Gyeongi-do Gangwon-do Chungcheongnam-do Chungcheongbuk-do Gyeongsangbuk-do Gyeongsangnam-do Jeollanam-do Jeollabuk-do Jeju-do

english.gg.go.kr eng.gwd.go.kr www.chungnam.net www.cbtour.net www.gbtour.net english.gsnd.net english.jeonnam.go.kr www.provin.jeonbuk.kr english.jeju.go.kr

82-31-249-2114 82-33-254-2011 82-42-255-9104 82-43-220-4674 82-53-959-0114 82-55-211-2114 82-61-247-0011 82-63-280-2114 82-64-710-2114

Kimchi Museum Korea House Korea Taekwondo Association Korean National Heritage Online NANTA National Museum of Korea Seoul Art Center Seoul Selection WorknPlay www.kimchimuseum.co.kr www.kous.or.kr www.koreataekwondo.org www.heritage.go.kr nanta.i-pmc.co.kr/en www.museum.go.kr www.sac.or.kr/eng www.seoulselection.com www.worknplay.co.kr 82-2-6002-6456 82-2-2266-9101~3 82-2-420-4271 82-42-481-4650 82-2-739-8288 82-2-2077-9000 82-2-580-1400 82-2-734-9565 82-2-568-7536

News & Media
Arirang TV KBS Korea Herald Korea Times MBC SBS Yonhap News www.arirang.co.kr www.kbs.co.kr www.koreaherald.co.kr www.koreatimes.co.kr www.imbc.com www.sbs.co.kr www.yonhopnews.co.kr 82-2-3475-5000 82-2-781-1000 82-2-1588-0533 82-2-724-2715 82-2-789-0011 82-2-2640-3000 82-2-398-3114

Ministry of Education Science and Technology Younsei University Korea Language Institute www.mest.go.kr www.yskli.com 82-2-6222-6060 822-2123-8550~2

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